Maldives runs virtual online parliamentary sessions with Microsoft Teams

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Singapore: Maldives, an island nation is conducting virtual online parliamentary sessions with the help of Microsoft 365. It has imposed nation wide lockdown in early March to fight COVID-19 outbreak.

Maldives‘ 89 lawmakers are using Microsoft Teams video conferencing technology to be part of the virtual online parliamentary sessions. As they can’t remain physically present at the People’s Majlis – the parliament house located in the capital city Male.

The sessions are also being broadcasted on television in real time, as well as on social media.

“Parliaments worldwide cannot just stop representing their people during this crisis. The institutions of democracy must continue to function. The Maldivian Parliament will go on, meeting online, and all its work will continue unimpeded,” said the Speaker and former President, Mohamed Nasheed, who chairs sessions from the now empty People’s Majlis.

The legislature had first adopted this solution in January 2019 as a tool for collaboration, due to its security features and its wide capabilities.

In wake of the COVID-19 situation, lawmakers have moved to fully use Teams for virtual sessions starting on March 30. On Teams, they can interact in real-time while maintaining social distancing and self-isolation safely at home, all in the knowledge that their virtual interactions are secure.

Tech One Sanje, a local Microsoft partner, helped the People’s Majlis with the right tools to enable this solution. Its team members were also operating in a work-from-home mode and had to do the Teams set-up by remotely collaborating with parliamentary IT staff.

The Maldives is an archipelago in the Indian Ocean, southwest of India. It has 26 coral atolls and a population of around 538,000.

(Image credit : People’s Majlis)

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