Planning Ministry: Former gov lost parking structure designs for King Salman Mosque

Cycles parked near the King Salman Mosque in Male' City. (Sun Photo/ Aalim Abdul latheef)

The Ministry of National Planning, Housing and Infrastructure on Sunday stated that design plans to solve the parking structure of King Salman Mosque were drawn, but the former government lost them.

The State Minister for the ministry Akram Kamaaludheen said this while speaking to Sun.

He noted that when the mosque was built, plans for underground parking were included in the drawings.

Additionally, he noted that if the incumbent Male’ City Mayor Dr Mohamed Muizzu who filled the role of Housing Minister in the former government, had wanted to develop the parking zone prior to building the mosque, it would have been built.

“We have seen the drawing for the underground parking of that mosque. Those drawings were lost when Muizzu was the minister [of housing ministry].”

In addition to this, Akram said that though the Saudi government granted USD 14 million for the mosque, only USD 3 million was deposited to Maldives Monetary Authority (MMA).

“Saudi gave USD 14 million in case to build the mosque. Only USD 3 million from that was deposited to MMA.”

Furthermore, he said that the structure of the mosque was changed and ultimately was built using only USD 8 million.

Akram went on to say that the parking was also not developed due to the former government’s corruption with regard to those funds, and assured that they will investigate what happened to that money.

“We will look into what happened to that money. Where that money went. Whether it went towards Muizzu or [former] president Yameen.”

Moreover, Akram said that they were talking about the parking zone in an attempt to depict that this government did not do anything. He added that they have not received any requests for land to develop a parking zone.

Meanwhile, speaking to Sun, Mayor Muizzu said on Saturday that the government was not supportive of efforts to develop a parking zone.

The King Salman mosque was opened with Friday prayers over the weekend, and since then many prayer goers frequent this mosque. Hence, the current parking zones close to the mosque get filled up, with people having to park on the streets as well.