Transport authority to destroy impounded vehicles

The transport authority has declared it will destroy all vehicles impounded by the police in their tow yard, despite a notice from parliament’s government oversight committee ordering it not to destroy the vehicles.

Speaking to the press today, chairman of the transport authority Abdul Rasheed Nafiz said that he did not believe that parliament could give the authority such an order as the motor vehicle act required the transport ministry to destroy impounded vehicles if the owner did not pay the fines within a certain duration.

Nafiz told the press that if MPs were worried about citizen’s property being destroyed they should amend the motor vehicle act to prevent the impounding and destruction of vehicles, or vote on the matter.

On June 24, police announced the impounded vehicles in the police tow yard would be destroyed if the owners did not claim them.

Police Spokesperson Ismail Ali told Minivan News that owners had already been given three months to reclaim their vehicles.

“The three month duration expired last Friday,’’ Ismail said. ‘’The tow yard is full now and we need the land for other purposes.’’

According to Ismail this is the first time  police will destroy vehicles since the motor transport act came in to effect.

‘’These vehicles that we are going to destroy have been here since 2008,’’ he said.

He said a committee consisting of members from Male City council, police, media, and transport authority will decide how to destroy these vehicles.

‘’The committee will give instructions to police,’’ he added.

Following the decision by police, Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) MP Ahmed ‘Bonda’ Rasheed staged a one-man protest inside the parliament chamber.

The Speaker Abdulla Shahid repeatedly asked Rasheed to take his seat, and after several hours asked security officials to remove him from the parliament chamber.

Later that day the issue was filed at the government oversight committee and the committee passed a motion to send a notice to the transport authority requesting it not destroy the vehicles.