License of 3 Hulhumale’ guesthouses suspended for noncompliance with Covid guidelines

Tourists at Velana International Airport on March 1, 2021. (Sun Photo/Fayaz Moosa)

Authorities have suspended the operating license of three guesthouses in suburban Hulhumale’ for failure to comply with COVID-19 guidelines.

Deputy Tourism Minister Assad Riza told Sun on Saturday that the guesthouses were penalized for accommodating tourists from South Asia for an extended period of time.

Assad said the operating license of the three guesthouses were suspended temporarily for 15 days.

He noted that South Asian tourists are currently only allowed in resorts.

Assad said that the Tourism Ministry initiated inspections of guesthouses in the Maldivian capital on Friday, in response to reports of tourists being accommodated in violation of COVID-19 guidelines.

He noted that according to the guidelines, tourists travelling from South Asia will only be allowed to transit in guesthouses in the greater Male’ region for maximum 48 hours.

 In addition to suspending the license of three guesthouses in Hulhumale’, authorities also cautioned three more guesthouses.

“The three guesthouses shut down in the inspections by Tourism Ministry are guesthouses operated in Hulhumale’. And two guesthouses operated in Male’ and one guesthouse operated in Hulhumale’ were cautioned,” said Assad.

Assad said that the suspension of the operating license of the three guesthouses will be lifted after 15 days, but that the guesthouses will be shut down for longer if more violations are discovered during inspections.