Ihavandhoo mulls actions against expats in wake of murders

A road in H.A. Ihavandhoo. PHOTO: ABDULLA AURAF/MIHAARU

A road in H.A. Ihavandhoo. PHOTO: ABDULLA AURAF/MIHAARU

The island council of Haa Alif atoll Ihavandhoo island declared late Saturday that they are mulling strict actions against expatriate workers over the murders of two locals allegedly committed by expats.

A 54 year old mechanic, Ismail Umar, was found murdered in the island’s ice plant on Friday. Police have so far arrested five expatriates in connection to the case, one of whom was Ismail Umar’s colleague at the ice plant.

The previous similar murder case in Ihavandhoo took place 15 years ago in August 2002, where three expatriate workers had brutally killed a 16 year old girl.

Ihavandhoo Island Council’s President Mohamed Rasheed stated that the residents of the islands are now living in fear in the wake of a second violent murder that appears to have been committed by expats. Hence, the island council will soon be taking action against any expatriate workers that step out of line.

Shedding light on the island council’s plans, Mohamed Rasheed declared that they will issue a deadline for any unregistered or illegal expat workers to leave Ihavandhoo.

“After that period, the council will work with Immigration to deport them,” he said.

He added that the council is also thinking of imposing a 10:00 p.m. curfew on all expat workers in Ihavandhoo.

“Many expats loiter around the roads and other places late at night. Some of them harass and bother locals. The council will also decide on a policy to deal with them,” he said.

Police are currently conducting special operations in the island to gather evidence for the murder of Ismail Umar.

Currently, there are over 200 expatriate workers living in Ihavandhoo, employed in the sectors of fisheries and infrastructure.

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