STELCO to file lawsuit over increased fees for road works

RDC workers redevelop Ameenee Magu. (Sun Photo/Mohamed Hayyan)

State Electric Company Limited’s (STELCO) Managing Director Ahmed Shareef, on Wednesday, describing the regulation Male’ City Council formulated on carrying our road works in Male’ City roads after closure of roads or non-closure as unlawful – has expressed STELCO’s intention to file a lawsuit to amend the regulation.

Speaking at a press conference on Wednesday, Shareef said although such regulations publicized by local councils under the Decentralization Act needs to be discussed prior with the Local Government Authority (LGA) – Male’ City Council has not carried out such discussions. Therewith, he said the regulation was unlawful.

“We will go to court to retract this unlawful regulation. This regulation cannot be enforced, it is unlawful and therefore null,” he said.

Shareef said that the regulation publicized would mainly impact the people’s pockets – due to the increased fees charged for road works.

As an example, Shareef detailed the previous rates and the current rates for road works at the particular road where H. Misouri is located. In this regard, he cited the previous total fee as MVR 31,741 – while the current total free stands at MVR 80,510.68. This marks a 154 percent increase.

“I personally asked LGA. City Council has not held such discussions with the authority. Thus, this regulation is unlawful,” added.

Shareef also said that the regulation has been set down by the City Council in violation of the best practices established across different regions in the world on setting down such regulations.

“Before enforcing such regulations, the public is granted a grace period before the regulation comes into force. It comes into force after the grace period. No such practices have been followed in this case,” he said.

The regulation states that it comes into force at the start of this year. Nevertheless, Shareef said the regulation was gazetted on January 2.

Shareef said that discussions held with different parties carrying out road works in Male’ City showed Male’ City Council held no discussions with them regarding the new regulation.