Malaysian IT company Nexbis has released a statement rubbishing the Maldivian government’s reasons for terminating their agreement to build and operate a new border control system.
The company has also suggested that human traffickers, fearful of a more comprehensive system, were behind the decision.
“The US PISCES system that is meant to replace the MIBCS is not a border control system nor is it an immigration solution, rather it is a terrorist tracking system that simply captures information of travellers and Maldivians who transit in and out of the country,” read the press release.
In June the Maldives was placed on the US State Department’s Tier Two Watch List for Human Trafficking for the fourth consecutive year.
Whilst the United States and the Maldives signed a memorandum of understanding regarding the provision of the free PISCES (Personal Identification Secure Comparison and Evaluation System) system in March of this year, Department of Immigration Spokesperson Ibrahim Ashraf told Minivan News last week that this system was not yet fully operational.
The PISCES system, designed by US tech firm Booz Allen Hamilton, has already been implemented in numerous other countries around the world, including Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq and Thailand.
Booz Allen’s website describes PISCES as “a critical tool in the war on terrorism”, allowing countries to collect, compare and analyse data in order to secure their borders.
At the time of the March agreement Immigration Controller Dr Mohamed Ali told Minivan News it was too early to tell if the new border controls would be a direct replacement for the system provided by Nexbis.
Contradictory reasons for termination
Today’s statement also takes issue with the claims of Defence Minister Mohamed Nazim that the installation of the Nexbis system was causing “major losses” to the state. The quote was given to local media on August 6 as the Malaysian company was informed it had 14 days to vacate the country.
Nexbis contends that the official notice of the termination it received contradicts the statement given by the Defence Minister. The notice – received on August 5 – stated that the agreement was invalid from the outset (void ab initio), alleges Nexbis. This, it argues, would seemingly dispel the need for any further justification for the contract’s termination.
Regardless, the statement strongly refutes the government’s justification for the sudden termination. It argues that the installation and operation of the system was carried out free of charge, with all costs to be levied from foreign visitors and work permit applicants. The fact that these charges – to be added to airline ticket prices – were not obtained was due to the “oversight of certain officials in notifying the relevant international authorities,” says Nexbis.
The company also added that US$2.8million it had billed the government was therefore the amount due for the arrival and departure of foreigners as per its contract, and not for the installation and operation of the system.
Attorney General Azima Shukoor last week told local media that negotiations were being held with Nexbis over reaching an out of court settlement for terminating the contract, a statement also cited by Nexbis as in contradiction to the official notice given.
“The government’s admission and acknowledgement that the Nexbis agreement is till date, a legally valid and binding agreement that is further supported by the statement made by Azima… which suggests nothing less than an assertion that the Nexbis Agreement is legally valid,” said the Malaysian company.
The terms of the agreement are governed under Singapore law, as are those of the GMR airport contract – terminated in November last year. The cancellation of this deal, the largest foreign direct investment in the country’s history, has led the GMR to seek US$1.4billion in compensation.
The Nexbis deal has been dogged by allegations of corruption since it was agreed under former President Mohamed Nasheed in 2010. The failure of the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) to conclusively prove foul play in this respect exonerates Nexbis from such charges, it has claimed.
Following parliament’s termination of the project in December, Nexbis sought a legal injunction to prevent any cancellation of the agreement while court hearings over the contract were still ongoing.
The company had sought to contest whether the ACC has the power to compulsorily request the government to cease all work in relation to the border control system agreement.
However, in April of this year, the High Court overturned a Civil Court ruling declaring the ACC could not terminate the agreement.
11 thoughts on “US “terrorist tracking system” will not replace comprehensive border control: Nexbis”
We want someone to track felons out.
If Nexbiz system is incapable to correlate various telltale flags from across the world, then it's your system that's deficient.
Malaysians think they can fart in Mordisians face every time. Well you got away with Air Mordis deal. We eventually learn too. We do the same to you this time.
Oh, come on! US and it's terrorist tracking system???!!!no sooner will we find hundreds of terrorists from Al Qaeda in here (Translated to Arabic meaning simply a place like a toilet- what the heck, why would a terrorist jihadi group name them "the toilets")laugh my brains off?!
Unless the US has a great sense of humor in naming terrorist groups!
You, one big hypocrite, i presume. All the instances that i have read your comments it's about dumb gullible dimwit Maldivians but this instance, because we are collaborating with Americans, Maldivians are suddenly this fast learning Einsteins eh!?? Why would Americans want to help some economically broken stupid Muslims??!!That's a question paused???
To begin with living above your means isn't going to solve anything . This is nation state . The average Maldivian should stop Correlating how they mortgage their home take a lone stare for a month , beg money from their girl -friend to by a iPhone and a galaxy s3
Just what the dent how is it of any benefit .
Please read this article. "Nexbis has explaining to do" - Nexbis is too mysterious to be dealing with.
Nexbis Limited pays $33,000 continuous disclosure penalty
A terrorist tracking system? These haabees would be all sent to Guantanamo Bay if this happens.
Most terrorists are in the US regime itself, total nonsense that it would need to track anyone.
whats wrong having this tracking system in Maldives.
This system is for free and we will save money nexbis can go home
@Shimy on Fri, 16th Aug 2013 2:07 PM
Oh, is it just sheer brilliance that
a) we believed the sea jinni, and the follow on activities, when then the sadistic king practically terrorised the nation.
b) that we continue to feed on Arabian Bedouin culture as the path to heaven, while the ring leaders run the dynasty laughing at us.
c) that we elected time and again, the same president, and fell for his voodoo calls, as though his contentment is our salvation.?
d) that we are content with the current political arena, with zero idea how to collectively move forward?
e) that we compete vehemently against each other over x number years on sand dunes, flag sizes, flotillas, ward-wars at the expense of working toward collective good?
f) that we have yet to have a solid constitution and laws for common good, while the MPs take leave, money and spit at us.
g) that the police is overwhelmed with IOU bounced-cheques cases that victims have filed, because they have been swindled by criminals.
h) that judges can fart at public, and yet have immunity over everything they do?
I) that we fight over our beautiful religion
Yep, definitely a very brilliant and exposed public, and a nation worth Nobel prizes. In thousands.
ive heard from technical staff at immigration that nexbiz is the best option from the systems thatz been offered yet. no, not because they received pens and laptops. they actually made some sensible and valid points on this.
apparently PISCES is missing a number of important modules that immigration have stated as NECESSARY in their needs requirement. they say only 4 out of some 12 necessary modules are present in this PISCES, as opposed to NEXBIZ system.
basically, coup government is risking national security by refusing the needs requirements of immigration for the border control system. allowing all sorts of criminals, traffickers, smugglers to enter and leave maldives freely as they do now. well, those uncle sam approves ofcourse. ive a feeling maldives will be off US human trafficking watch list even with all this. big brother is happy with the coup government after all.
yeah india and US are offering border control systems that are not as expensive as nexbiz. thatz what ACC keep saying. but no one is asking about what we NEED in maldives right now. where the frack is that majlis committee on national security?!
@ Andrew Andreas
Now did i say Maldivians are brilliant, i was just referring to your hypocrisy.
Man, talk about not getting the point
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