President: Widespread corruption is not there in the government

President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih. (Photo/President's Office)

President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih has denied that corruption was rife in his administration. 

The President was speaking in a press conference today when he made the remark. President Solih’s party MDP’s leader and his long-term close friend and ally Parliament Speaker Mohamed Nasheed and Economic Minister Fayyaz Ismail who also belongs to MDP have both attributed to the losses in the recent local council elections to corruption. 

President Solih was questioned by a journalist during the presser today regarding the comments by some two most senior members of the party. The President responded by saying that he was not one to give in to corruption and that the practice was something that had continuously happened in the Maldives in history.

“Corruption is old in the Maldives. It could still exist in every area after fading in. Whether it is the judiciary, government or independent institutions. It is also likely that it exists in other powers as well. We are doing what we have to do to amend this,” said the President. 

The President attributed a 40 percent increase in the corruption perception index in the most recent years to change brought in the administration. The President said that regarding the ventilator scandal of the Health Ministry, the government had submitted the case to the Anti-Corruption Commission immediately upon the release of the Auditor General report. 

The President pledged that the government would keep on providing the full cooperation for the investigation in the matter but said that the government would not intervene in the ACC investigation since the administration always advocated for the independence and freedom of such institutions to operate. 

The President even if he would not intervene, he would oversee the matter. 

“If corruption is there inside the government, we will do all we can to erase it. I am guaranteeing that we will do all we can to get rid of corruption. I will not say that there is corruption within the government to the extent that you are saying,” said President Solih.