MVK has agreed to resume stalled ferry services in Addu City following discussions with the Addu City Council and the Ministry of Economic Development this week.
MVK Maldives Pvt Ltd was contracted to provide ferry services in the southernmost atoll under a Public Private Partnership (PPP) agreement signed by the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) government in 2009.
Officials from the company has previously told parliament’s government oversight committee that plots of land awarded under the agreement have not been handed over.
Addu City Deputy Mayor Abdulla Thoyyib told online news outlet CNM that the company has agreed to resume ferry services next week while the city council agreed to hand over the plots of land within a month.
However, the company requested until December to start ferry services to nearby Fuvahmulah, he said.
Last month, MDP MP for Addu Meedhoo, Rozaina Adam, described the government’s “indifference” to providing regular ferry services in Addu City as discriminatory.
While there have been no regular service for the past two years, Addu City Mayor Mayor Abdulla ‘Soabe’ Sodiq said at the time that many are forced to take expensive private boats, while in medical emergencies people usually hire a speed boat for approximately MVR2,500 – double that rate at night.
Hulhumeedhoo, with an estimated population of over six thousand, is disconnected from the rest of the inhabited islands of the city which are joined by the 14km Addu Link Road causeway.