Monday, February 9, 2009

The Checkered History of Muleeaage


When last Friday President Mohamed Nasheed moved into Muleeaage, he was essentially moving the seat of power as near as possible to its original historic location.   Muleeaage was built between 1914 and 1919 by King Shamsuddin III for his son and heir Prince Hassan Izzuddin. Located on the site of Shamsuddin's ancestral home, Muleege, the new house was designed on the style of colonial bungalows in vogue during the era in Ceylon and completed in preparation for the return of Izzuddin to Male in 1920 after completing his education at Royal College, Colombo. 

 Admittedly Muleeaage or its predecessor Muleege never served as a Royal Palace. But it is located just a stone's throw away from the site of the former royal palace, now called Sultan's Park.  Most of the buildings in the royal palace grounds were demolished during the late 1960s and thus the original palace no longer exists.  As such the nearest one could get to a royal palace is Muleeaage.

Muleege, which stood on the original site, was the ancestral home of King Hassan Izzuddin (Dhon Bandaarain 1759-66) from his maternal side. It remained with the Huraage ruling dynasty throughout its history. The last occupant was Prince Muleegey Manippulhu, who later ascended the throne as King Shamsuddin III.  

 The first occupant of the newly built Muleeaage was Hassan Izzuddin, from 1920 to 1934. The house did not prove auspicious for Hassan, though he apparently spent many happy moments there. Those days it was famous for the many music and dance performances organized by the young prince. Izzuddin however soon became the victim of a smear campaign organized by his uncle Abdul Majeed and cousin Hassan Fareed. Ultimately he was discredited and banished in 1934 to Fuvahmulah where he died in 1938.

 After Izzuddin's ouster Muleeaage remained in disuse till Mohammed Amin shifted the Ministry of Home Affairs there during World War II. Later when Amin became president in January 1953, he made it his presidential palace. After Amin's ouster later that year it became the Prime Minister's Office under Ibrahim Faamuladheyri Kilegefaanu. After that Muleeaage again went into a period of disuse till the late 1970s, when President Ibrahim Nasir made it presidential palace once again. It retained this status till 1995 when Theemuge became the new presidential palace.

After the inauspicious deaths of the first two occupants of Muleeaage, the later occupants appear not to have taken any particular liking for the house. Nasir used it only as temporary residence while his own house Velaanaage was under construction. Maumoon also used it more or less similarly while Theemuge was being readied.

With the new president showing a clear preference for Muleeaage, the house is destined to see greater days. Many people believe it is a better choice than Theemuge, historically, esthetically, topographically and financially.

13 comments:

hashi said...

There is no better thought than using Theemuge as presidential hostel. Every elected president cannot have a new home and a new island. Arrogant or elitist...that chap is. U wrote a wonderful story about the haunted house. I believe medics spend more time in the internet and blogging than on their duties. hehehe!

hashi said...

it'd b best Theemuge remains the presidential hostel. Every new elect cannot have a new home and a fresh island. Arrogant or elitist...that chap is. U wrote interestin stuff of that haunted place. I believe maldivian medics spend more time on the internet than on duty.

Anonymous said...

Muee aage has brought bad luck because of the sexual orgies held there by Hassan Izzadhdheen

Anonymous said...

Every State be it small or large has state icons or symbols. We too have them and one of them is Theemuge, The Presidential Palace. It was build for that very purpose and since 1995 it is the Presidential Palace. No body can deny that very fact as it was build by our state funds and it was used as Presidential House. Therefore, it is very important that Theemuge still remains as Presidential Palace. We do not need to convert the building - Theemuge to house government offices or institutions. It is far better to convert Muleeaage to house those institutions which are supposed to occupy Theemuge as Muleeaage housed several key institutions of the government in the 40's like the Home Affairs.

Anonymous said...

muleeaage the haunted house...wonder how long anni can stay there..heard maumoon used to stay up some nights reciting quran..

Anonymous said...

Henveiru Ganduvaru Au Manippulhu has moved ion to the newly renovated Henveiru Ganduvaru(Mulee Aage).
Now let the fun begin.

Abdullah Waheed's Blog said...

To anon 6:17 pm,
The so-called wild orgies at Henveiru Ganduvaru (Muleeaage) may have perhaps been exaggerated. It could have been a smear campaign during the power struggle that marked the end of Shamsuddin’s reign. There was bitter rivalry between the King and his heir on one side and the Prime Minister and his sons on the other side. Prime Minister Abdul Majeed successfully labeled Hassan Izzuddin a sexual deviant, in a superb example of the pot calling the kettle black. Majeed and his elder son Mohammed Fareed had the same sexual orientation problem they accused Izzuddin of. But as in any struggle, history is written by the victors. Thus today we read history that makes izzuddin look like a sex freak and Majeed as a statesman. Reality may be a bit different.

Abdullah Waheed's Blog said...

To anon 9:17 pm,
Theemuge and Muleeaage both have too much historic and aesthetic value for them simply to be assigned as utility buildings. They are national treasures that must be preserved.

Anonymous said...

Palace is where king or queen live according the kid's story books. I am quite to hear "palace" for official resident of the President in democratic presidential system of government. Are we still living on the hangovers of the Sultanates?

Anonymous said...

I do not care whether it Theemuge or Muliaage, as long as the cost of operating the official resident of the President cheap. Muliaage is cheap to operate, in fact 28 times cheaper to the pockets of the people. That's what matter in modern economy and small state like us.

Anonymous said...

Muleeaage is a haunted place. Even now in the night Izzudeen is heard enjoying himself.Maumoon warded off these spirits with Quran.I heard already Izzuddeen is harassing Anni. The other night Anni was physically thrown on to the floor by Izzuddeen. Sometimes Anni hears Bodu beru and other moaning sounds. I suggest some fanditha man be permanently employed as the official sorcerer.

Anonymous said...

Izzudden will not harass Anni.He may harass Laila.I think the real story is Izzudden threw Lailaa off the bed and took her place in bed.

Anonymous said...

Rumours have it that Laila goes to Aarah every night.She is being harassed out of Muleeaage by Shamsuddeen and his gay son Izzudden.