President Mohamed Nasheed, as part of his tour to Lhaviyani Atoll, has visited Naifaru today and met with Naifaru Island Council.

At the meeting, the President and Councillors discussed the ongoing as well as planned development programmes for the island and the necessary arrangements to deliver the government services and programmes through the island council.

On the proposed projects, the President updated the council on the progress in the island’s harbour project and said the construction of the harbour would begin this year.

The government has signed the contract with Works Corporation to construct Naifaru harbour through contractor finance, in November 2010.

While in Naifaru, the President visited the Tiny Island Marine Protection Centre run by Tiny Island Volunteers, a non government organisation in the Maldives that promotes volunteerism and provides volunteer opportunities in the Maldives for foreign nationals.

During the visit to the centre, the President was briefed and shown a video presentation on the turtle conservation programme operated by Tiny Island Volunteers and Naifaru Juveniles, a community organisation in the island.

The President also released one from the first batch of turtles in the centre’s nursery to sea station, where they will grow until the turtles would be released to the sea after one year.

Turtle conservation programme is one of many activities of Tiny Island Conservation programmes. The organisation runs awareness programmes for school children, youth and the island community on environmental and marine conservation.

The President also today visited Naifaru Health Centre and Madhrasathu Ifthithaahu, the main school in Naifaru.

President Nasheed has returned to Male’ late this afternoon after concluding his tour of Lhaviyani Atoll.