First lady Fathmath Ibrahim visited patients at the Hulhumalé hospital today.
According to CNM, the first lady inquired after the health of admitted patients and sought information about improving the hospital’s services.
Late last month, the first lady visited chronically ill patients at the state-run Indira Gandhi Memorial Hospital (IGMH) and distributed packages of rice, dates and cans to the disabled in Malé and its suburbs Hulhumalé and Vilimalé.
An eyewitness at the IGMH said he saw the first lady handing out envelopes with money to patients.
“When I asked them what the envelope was, they gave it to me and I saw the envelope said it was from the couple and contained MVR1,000,” he said.
But the first lady’s secretary denied rumours that she had distributed money to the sick at the IGMH.
The Ministry of Islamic Affairs’ Zakat Fund has sponsored bone marrow transplants for 34 children with thalassemia, reports state broadcaster Television Maldives (TVM).
The first ten children sponsored under the Zakat Fund departed for Sri Lanka and India with their donors on Thursday (March 12).
The bone marrow operation costs about MVR700,000 per patient, according to the National Social Protection Agency (NSPA).
NSPA CEO Mujthaba Jaleel said the first ten children were chosen based on a list provided by the Maldives Blood Service, adding that accommodation and food expenses would also be covered by the Zakat Fund.
He noted that the children would have to stay in sterilised facilities at the hospital for at least 30 days.
Eight children were sent to the Manipal Hospital in India and two children to the Asiri Central Hospital in Sri Lanka, Jaleel said.
NSPA hoped the second patch of thalassemia patients would be able to depart next month, he added.
First Lady Fathmath Ibrahim meanwhile met the ten children and their families at the Ibrahim Nasir International Airport prior to their departure.
NSPA presented the first lady a plaque of appreciation for her contribution and support, whilst Madam Fathmath presented commemorative plaques to the children.
President Abdulla Yameen and First Lady Fathmath Ibrahim exchanged Eid al-Fitr greetings with the public at Sultan Park today.
According to the President’s Office, cabinet ministers, MPs, members of political parties, state dignitaries, and foreign diplomats attended the reception.
“A large number of members of the general public, including children, also called on the president and the first lady this morning,” the President’s Office said.
Exchanging Eid greetings with the public was biannual tradition during the 30-year reign of President Yameen’s half brother, former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom.
Sun Online meanwhile reported the president as condemning the Israeli aggression in Gaza and appealing to the public to bear in mind the suffering of fellow Palestinian Muslims on a day of Islamic unity.
Nearly 3,000 people exchanged Eid greetings with the president and first lady between 9:00 and 11:00am this morning, Sun Online reported.