Malé City Council (MCC) has alleged that police officers and some housing ministry staff are impersonating city council supervisors and unlawfully trying to confiscate items at the local market.
According to an MCC press statement released today (February 8), the local market falls under the jurisdiction of the city council as part of the Decentralisation Act.
However, the council said it had been receiving complaints from market traders saying that police and housing ministry staff are pretending to be council supervisors and attempting to confiscate items.
Repeated removals of the council’s powers by central authorities has led to suggestions that the government is trying to “destroy decentralisation”.
The removal of lands formerly under the council’s jurisdiction in December last year saw the city mayor admit that his council now oversaw only construction, issuing death and birth certificates, and cleaning mosques.
Later the same month, the housing ministry transferred over one third of the council’s employees to its own offices.
The council today condemned the acts of the officials accused, saying that this activity was being carried out without consulting the council in order to defame it.