2000 political appointees under President Muizzu spark outrage

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Since President Dr. Mohamed Muizzu took office, concerns have risen over the misuse of taxpayers’ money due to an excessive number of political appointments. The Sports Ministry is a prime example, with an astounding 195 political appointees by May 1, raising questions about fiscal responsibility and efficient governance.

The Sports Ministry:

  • One Minister: MVR 58,500
  • Sports Commissioner: MVR 58,500
  • Minister’s Personal Assistant: MVR 15,000
  • Three State Ministers: MVR 43,500 each
  • 16 Deputy Ministers: MVR 31,500 each
  • 38 Senior Political Directors: MVR 25,500 each
  • 25 Political Directors: MVR 20,500 each
  • 12 Assistant Political Directors: MVR 18,000 each
  • 98 Youth Associates: MVR 13,000 each

This results in a total monthly salary expenditure of MVR 3,738,000, or MVR 44,856,000 annually. Over President Muizzu’s five-year term, this will exceed MVR 224 million. To put this in perspective, the average salary of a civil servant is about MVR 8,000, meaning the monthly expenditure on the Sports Ministry’s political staff could pay the salaries of 467 civil servants.

The Sports Ministry is not alone. The Agriculture and Home Ministries have also seen a rise in political appointees:

  • Agriculture Ministry: 31 political staff, costing MVR 860,500 per month, or MVR 10,326,000 annually.
  • Home Ministry: 53 political staff, costing MVR 1,608,000 per month, or MVR 19,296,000 annually.

This pattern of escalating political appointments breaks President Muizzu’s pledge to limit such positions to 700. Reports suggest the actual number is close to 2,000, a significant breach of his promise.

The financial burden of these appointments is staggering. The Home Ministry alone will exceed MVR 96.4 million over five years. Combined with other ministries, the financial impact diverts substantial resources from potentially more impactful public services.

Moreover, reports indicate that some government offices lack basic furniture due to the influx of political appointees.

Broken Promises :

President Muizzu’s administration has not adhered to its commitment to limit political appointments, raising serious concerns about governance and fiscal prudence. The significant expenditure on political staff contrasts sharply with the average civil servant’s salary and the broader needs of the Maldivian people. The misuse of taxpayers’ money through excessive political appointments deviates from efficient and transparent governance.