Minister Aslam: Not every island requires asphalt laid roads

Minister of National Planning, Infrastructure and Housing Mohamed Aslam.

Minister of Housing, National Planning and Infrastructure has stated that not every island in the Maldives requires asphalt laid roads.

Speaking at the parliamentary sitting held today, Minister Aslam said that the infrastructural work that has the highest demand for, is that of road development.

On this note, he detailed that road development projects at 22 islands have been awarded to contractors – whereas road development projects at 19 islands are currently planned.

“Laying asphalt in the roads of islands has become a trend now,” he had said.

In this regard, he stressed that not every island requires asphalt roads. However, he pointed out that the development of asphalt roads may be necessary for islands that have large populations and are overcrowded. 

Speaking further, Minister Aslam said that there were islands in the Maldives which are so small, that if a person standing at one end of the island and calls out for someone who is at the other end, it can be heard by the latter. Noting that people are demanding that asphalt roads be developed at such islands, Minister Aslam said that he does not believe such places are ideals for many vehicles for traveling.

“I do believe pickups should exist. But, in an island that is of the size aforementioned, I do not believe taxis and private cars should exist,” he added.

Minister Aslam said that the development of roads is closely connected to how they are used. Therefore, he said that regulations must exist on how vehicles are utilized on the road.

He also added that roads can be evenly developed with drainage systems in place, without opting for asphalt laid road.