Hope kindled for recovery of embezzled funds in MMPRC corruption

President Yameen speaks at PPM ceremony to present membership forms of ruling party's new members. PHOTO: HUSSAIN WAHEED/MIHAARU

President Yameen speaks at PPM ceremony to present membership forms of ruling party’s new members. PHOTO: HUSSAIN WAHEED/MIHAARU

President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom announced the prospect of recovering the state funds that were embezzled through Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC) two years ago in the largest corruption scandal to rock the Maldives.

Speaking at a ceremony held at Dharubaagu convention centre on Wednesday to recruit new members to ruling Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM), the president proclaimed that the Anti-Corruption Commission has completed its investigation into the MMPRC corruption case and determined the total amount of state funds embezzled via the corporation.

“We’ve received some hope that there are ways to recover the money,” he said, vowing that his administration will work to reclaim the embezzled funds.

ACC had earlier stated that their probe revealed the amount of stolen funds is similar to the amount of MVR 1.2 billion that was reported by the Audit Office.

In his address, President Yameen remarked that punishing the corrupted is easy unlike recovering embezzled state funds.

He added that news reports and articles reveal that corruption and abuse of power were present in the Maldives during previous governments as well, thus declaring that such scandals were not born in his administration contrary to allegations and rumours.

The MMPRC scandal is the largest case of corruption in the Maldives history, where MVR 1.2 billion worth of state funds received as acquisition costs via island leases for resort development had been embezzled through the corporation.

ACC had announced earlier this month that it will publish its case report in April.

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