Parliament rejects motion calling to ensure safety of Maldivian aircrafts

Maavah MP Mohamed Saeed. (Photo/People's Majlis)

Emergency motion submitted to the Parliament calling on the government to ensure the safety aboard aircrafts belonging to the national airline, Maldivian, in light of the financial crisis faced by its operator, Island Aviation Services, has been rejected.

The emergency motion was submitted at today’s parliamentary sitting by PNC’s Deputy Leader, Maavah MP Mohamed Saeed.

In his motion, MP Saeed said that Island Aviation’s financial situation has hit an all time low – with the company almost on the verge of bankruptsy.

“Island Aviation’s operations have derailed significantly, with the’s financial situation hitting an all time low, and the company almost on the verge of bankruptcy. Audit reports show that the company incurred a loss of MVR 400 million in 2020. Last year the company incurred a loss of MVR 159 million,” he had said.

MP Saeed also underscored that salaries of Island Aviation staff are given after the withdrawal of a loan from the ministry.

He also stressed an increase of technical issues aboard of Maldivian aircrafts – and non-replacement of tires on the aircrafts within the recommended timeframe having led to the grounding of some aircrafts due to lack of spares.

Citing these reasons, MP Saeed said that he was submitting the emergency motion calling on the government to ensure the safety of travelers by adherence to aviation safety standards and guidelines.

Thirty-nine parliamentarians took part in the vote taken on whether to accept to reject the motion. Ultimately the motion was rejected by a majority of 33 parliamentarians – with only five voting to accept the motion.

Statistics by Finance Ministry show that Island Aviation incurred the biggest lost in the second quarter of the last year – which is MVR 99 million. This loss was a result of shortage of revenue.

As per Finance Ministry’s audit report – reasons behind the loss incurred by Island Aviation include administrative cost and a hike in selling and marking expenses. In the third quarter of last year, administrative cost of Island Aviation stood at MVR 114.9 million. By the fourth quarter, the figure rose up to MVR 138.1 million.

The audit report said that administrative cost was so high due to expensive on salaries and allowances of employees, especially following the increase in the rates of pilots.