Monday, January 13, 2014

Democracy ah Kuri Dhathuru - background - Part 1

I was sipping a coffee in Male' Artificial Beach, when I heard about the ongoing shooting in Jail, where a prisoner taken to IGMH. When I reached IGMH I saw a  mob attacking the nearest Police Post. I saw desperate and helpless Abas Ibrahim (Endherimaage) trying to convince the public to stop their outcry. Next I heard Ivan Naseem's death and about many injured inmates. I had witnessed most of the events through out the city until midnight. I saw an angry public, and helpless government to solve sudden crisis, and a mob trying to take advantage of the situation.

Curious, I questioned myself where the country was heading and as time passed I got more involved in politics. Then came the era of dhivehi observer, an internet dissent website publishing whatever public sent to them. We all took that on face value, and did not bother much if any of it was based on facts. The founder of DO is Ahmed Moosa (DO Sappe). My first impression was messy about him due to a past incident, when me and some friends had dinner at Local Haruge Cafe, a restaurant managed by DO Sappe, The pizza we ordered was made on rotten flour, we demanded to meet Sappe and he came and scold us on top of his voice (his customers) and said if we don't have money why should we come to eat. What he failed to understand was we are his customers and we had rights to complain on those circumstances. I still remember the day Sappe left UK on his dhivehi observer mission, I met him day before on a Cigarette break at Fila Building where our office, and his office Horizon Fisheries was located. He told me he was going to UK to oversea Villa UK Travel Office, but underneath the deal was Qasim Ibrahim was sending him to UK to run a dissent website.

Next - Black Friday - coming up


Monday, January 6, 2014

My name is Ahmed Marzooq

My name is Ahmed Marzooq, the son of Hussain Raha and late Khadheeja Manike. I am blessed with 11 siblings and numerous nephews. I grew up in slams of Feydhoo Elhavau, a poor neighborhood, went with you to Kalha hassanbeybeyge hawwatha Quran class.

When my Grand Pa (Kudhu Fubbiyaage Kalo) died we moved to Noovilla and on my teenage I spent wiith the kids of maadhela. Few of My childhood friends are Jameel (MNDF First officer), Mohamed Faiz (HR Manager), Rasheed (Accountant), Ikram (Accountant), Shaheem (CIMA, accountant), Godi (board director at TCL), Hamdhoon Zadi (web designer), Maadhela Sharafa, Intha, Ludda, hassan and many others

I went with you  to Mosques, Rekibeybeyge Qur'an classes, I played with you in street soccer, and had numerous teenage fun.

My name is Ahmed Marzooq, I went with you to Feydhoo School when the school was a private school. I have not forgotton the basic school and its basic facilities. I had plenty of loving teachers. I was among who scored top on all my classes, and was your school Captain. I had many 100s of class mates and school mates who live among you. I am still blessed that I have no problem with anyone of you.

to be continued..... on next blog post

Monday, March 14, 2011

the nation

when did, and how did we end up here in Maldives is a question never answered or partly answered till today. From the world history Maldives can only be traced to from the manuscripts of Ibn Batuta. Sometimes I imagine given the reality of average island population, for instance when British people evacuated Gan inhabitants it was recorded there were some 900 people. If you apply the population growth rate, or children born rate, or average big families of some 12 children each. It would not be foolish to understand or conclude that the start of Gan Civilization would have been very near, perhaps less than 100 years. For instance today after 60 years the same Gan island population which migrated to feydhoo island is now 5000. That means almost 500 percent increase on 60 years, if that reality remain than Gan island before 60 years would be few people or first settlers. But strangely even when Maldives got Islamic back in 1000 years still Gan was recoded in Maldives history as an inhabited island.

May be something bizarre was going on in Maldives, perhaps the large number of population was getting extincted over and over again in these islands history for unknown reason, perhaps due to epidemics, or perhaps due to tsunamis or other reason which god knows.

This condition has to be applied for the history researchers of Maldives, for why the island populations did not grew over thousands of years, when there is no known civil wars in Maldives.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Changing Tourism

i havent been blogging for long time. Not sure if anyone visit this blog anymore. But i am still here waiting for something good to happen sitting in my small office. Dreaming to have a stake on the changing tourism. my last atempt to of to geting a resort failed with a lucky draw of more than 2000 applicants. The number i had was so unlucky that i was not even close to the winner's number.

But inspite of all. i must say Maldives has been doing good now, interms of policy and changing paterns. But what is surprising is with this magnitude of proposed resorts the real mechanics of the scene is totally ignored. or perhaps not understood by those who put forwards 100s of islands for bid.

You see my point. What i am trying to say is even though goverment big many many resorts there are no normal locals who can efford to make it. there is no invesment plans. Means all the resorts again one way or other goes to the same ppl who have already resorts. if a small guy win, he will have to give or sell it other. but few lucky ones manage to get partnerships. but no one really knows how the agreement is drawn finally. is it 5% vs 95%. or what

What is really needed is invesment bank, a bank who is ready to give loans on who ever who get the bid done.

May be it will happen soon, if that happens a Maldives Blogger like me will want to be the first person to open their door. hehe

Tuesday, January 16, 2007


Many of the people who are working in tourism industry, Cross World Maldives isn’t a new name. It was one of the most successful local travel agency ever operated in Maldives. A full geared and capable travel agent filling thousands of rooms in Maldives. Inner Maldives and few successful travel agents are people who have worked in Cross World Maldives. Almost every person in tourism industry of Maldives has some kind of opinion about this agency….

Sadly before it even reached its peak it collapsed. Until now I never realized what went wrong. Is it bad management or any other problem? There are different stories, but I managed to speak to one of the director and according to him it was because of Gan Project. The company operated Ocean Reef Club, presently Equator Village at Gan Addu. For him the company over invested in Gan project which didn’t operated well due to operational difficulties. And this turned out a disaster.

But what is worth to mention is due to the closure of this agency, there had been huge impact of the perception of the people who operated resorts. Since lot of resort’s beds were allotted and filled by this agency. The unfilled rooms became a problem. This is where perhaps a new trend born, where resort owners found the need to market themselves their product. But sadly the new culture had no space for another local travel agency. Perhaps they lost faith in local agents. Or perhaps they didn’t want to take risks. Whatever the answer to this might be, this discouraged a localised selling process. The industry unfortunately went 100 percent to foreign tour operators. This isn’t healthy for the sustainable development of the industry.

Years after cross world, nothing changed to the trend, no local operator is yet capable of addressing the answer nor are they able to bring themselves to the operational standard as Cross World.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Maldives - through the eyes of a travel agent

Maldives is so sellable? One might wonder when he thinks of the beautiful coral islands with those green palm trees, azure lagoon and white sandy beaches. It can be easily convinced to a person with one of those Michael Friedel’s postcard, where a palm tree bends over to Kuda Bandos Lagoon. Wow one will gaze….

For Travel agents this is a money factory! Perhaps that is why you see almost all big brands never let their eyes off Maldives. Like Kouni, TUI, Thomas Cook, Nickerman, Hays & Javis and many more. Perhaps that is why they make huge charter flight operations to Maldives. I remember sitting with Mr. Champa Afeef in refreshment at a MATI meeting, and as he described how they managed operating resorts in 70’s. For sure he and many others are the ambassadors of tourism. I remember an interview by Mr. Koli Umar Manik describing the very first tourist group came to Maldives and how they managed to cook lunch for them with local style biriyani. And later the tourists didn’t like it.

For me they are absolutely happy with their achievements! I remember Mr. Deen telling how he managed to bring tourists to Bandos with local dhonis, sometimes with rough seas. I met one of the first tourists to Maldives and he described one of the events which occurred at that time. He was sat to travel to Meeru and the captain of the dhoni mistakenly went to another island. Because the same island from far look liked same. For him the only way he could describe his destination island is with few extra long palm trees. I remember sitting with my fellow colleagues back in resorts which I worked, and how they described the first experiences in 70s. I remember them telling about club nature where all tourists stay nude.

Maldives has grown to become one of the most favorite tourist destination and all the tour operators and travel agents through out the world is anxious to sell it! This is a lucrative industry and a gold mine. Not only you could sell it easily but you could put high margin. Interestingly the reality for fellow local travel agents isn’t same! They are much left behind as the industry grew. And awkwardly with this magnitude of tourist industry, Maldives never realized to produce capable local travel agencies. Although difficult to digest, the industry never saw the need to empower local travel agents. The poor local travel agents keep working until they go bankrupt.

When you see though the eyes of a local travel agent, Maldives doesn’t fascinate him, nor is it a money factory. Neither has it produced gold for him. Not even it is tourist’s heaven for his clients. Than why is he on to this difficult business? A good question with an easy answer! This is because this is most natural industry to be in, the only industry to do business apart from fishing industry is tourism, and for those who have tourism background their primary interest become to be a travel agent. The only problem is there is no mechanized system in place for the agencies to operate.

It is very important that there should be local agencies well operated in Maldives for the very survival of this industry, for the long run and sustainable development of this industry. But who is there to address this question…. A never ending story…

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Welcome to my blog

Inspite many of us been working in tourism industry of Maldives, few actually write about this industry. There have been many occasions while working in this industry we felt like telling the management of the resort to change that. or telling the ministry to change this. The industry's feelings are yet to be shared. Ofcourse we see some magazines, few articles always talkign how beautiful Maldives is. But there are many facets which we never discussed. Welcome to my blog, here atleast you will see opinion of one of those person's working in this industry