Information released by the government shows the expenditure of the Corruption and Asset Recovery Commission has risen to MVR 9.9 million in the three years since the presidential commission was established.
The information was released in response to a request submitted by a private citizen under the Right to Information Act, seeking details of expenditure by three presidential commissions; the Commission on Disappearances and Deaths (DDCom), Corruption and Asset Recovery Commission, and Commission to Inquire into Child Rights Violations.
The highest spending among the three commissions was by the Corruption and Asset Recovery Commission – established by President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih in November 2018 to investigate and recover billions stolen from the sale of islands for resort development.
The commission’s expenditure over the past three years amounts to MVR 9.9 million.
The highest spending was on salaries and allowances. The commission spent MVR 9.1 million on salaries and allowances, and MVR 670,000 on capital expenditure. The highest spending in a single year was in 2019 – when the commission spent over MVR 4 million.
The DDCom was established to fulfil President Solih’s electoral pledge of uncovering the truth behind unresolved murders and enforced disappearances and delivering justice. The commission is mandated to investigate murders and disappearances which took place between January 1, 2012 and November 17, 2018.
Since DDCom's establishment in November 2018, the commission has spent MVR 4.8 million on salaries and allowances, MVR 270,000 on travel, MVR 230,000 on administrative expenses, and MVR 210,000 on capital expenditure.
The highest spending in a single year was in 2019 – when the commission spent over MVR 2 million.
Commission to Inquire into Child Rights Violations was established in February 2020. The commission has spent MVR 739,000 on salaries and allowances.
The presidential commissions have been hit with criticism over failure to deliver sufficient results, despite the high salaries and allowances paid to the commissioners.