Jumhooree Party to Protest Airport Privatisation: Gasim

The Jumhooree party, lead by Gasim Ibrahim, MP for Maamingili and one of the richest men in the Maldives, is protesting against government plans to privatise the Male’ International Airport.

The party will issue a joint declaration with other political parties and NGOs regarding the matter. The party, together with other political parties, will also hold a demonstration against privatisation. The decision was made during its council meeting held on 22 June 2010.

The airport was a major people’s investment and a key asset, said Gasim who claims that the money needed for the development could be easily raised through financial institutions without privatisation. Gasim also mentioned security concerns for the airport.

Gasim also said such decisions should not be taken just to get some money for the government budget. He warned that once the term of the contract expires, the company would sell the airport back to government at a price that government can never pay, and the company would own the airport forever.

Gasim called for people to object the decision by the government. The Jumhooree party has sent a letter to President Nasheed informing him of its concerns, and the Jumhooree party has also made a submission to the Majlis about the matter.