Former Defense Minister Mohamed Nazim’s brother and former Managing Director of State Trading Organization (STO) sits down with Vnews English to give his side of the story, while breaking the silence over Nazim’s arrest and verdict.
Azim described the 11 year jail term issued over Nazim for the alleged possession and smuggling of dangerous weapons as a "very unfair sentence." He said that the family was very well prepared for a long sentence, since they had known he had been framed, from the beginning. He also shed more light on Nazim's character, and ensured that he is safe.
“He [Nazim] is doing good, his spirit is very high. Cause he is a well trained person, a service man for over 25 years. He has spent three and half years in the cabinet, no corruption case against him. Nothing, nobody has said anything bad about him. He is a very active person, someone who is very good to everyone. He ensures that he attends anyone’s call, he tries to give his maximum to anyone who requests his assistance. That is his character,” Azim said.
Azim assured that Nazim is under good care of the staff in Asseyri Jail in Kaafu atoll Himmafushi, where he is to serve the 11 year jail term issued against him.
Azim also expressed his concerns over the justice system, stating that the “justice system needs to be reformed” as this was the first time judiciary determined that “someone is guilty for an act he had not committed.”
He refuted the rumors that Nazim’s defense lawyers had failed to give a proper defense for Nazim during the interview as well.
“As far as I’m concerned, they have done a very good job. And there is no way the judges can sentence him as guilty. I would say that the sentence was called by breaking all the norms and regulations available. It is totally a politically motivated sentence,” Azim said.
Azim also talked regarding Nazim’s career and alleged that it was his commitment to his work and the betterment of the nation that had caused the backlash from the government.
“Normally, Nazim is not a person who talks about how government operates or its secrets. He’s a very silent person, a very professional person. But during the hearing we came to know that he is not happy with the way the Police operate within the country. I think Police was forced or Police force was encouraged to do criminal activities within Male’ city. Likewise, they have chopped down some fenfoah ruh [arecanut palm trees] in Male’. Nazim was not very happy with that. His intention was that we all can live a happy life in this country. Police should ensure that they protect and serve the nation not to act as criminal. He has mentioned this to Yameen. I think this is where it all started.”
Azim also noted that there were one or two Ministers of President Yameen’s cabinet who had felt inadequate of their performance in the cabinet compared to that of Nazim’s performance.
“They are jealous of his hard work and achievement. So they wanted to ensure that he is out of the scene. He would say that I’m doing the work President has given him. That he is fulfilling his responsibilities. Within the government there is a lot of jealousy on him, due to his capacity, capability, the way he manages all of his responsibilities,” Azim said.
Speaking with Vnews English, Azim also stressed that the public opinion towards his brother had swelled considerably, especially given that many believed that he had been framed.
“Even in social media, a lot of people are campaigning for his release. We don’t know who these people are. Most of the users in social media have nothing to do with us. That means that a lot of people wants his release, his service to the nation. In a country you don’t get a lot of leaders, lot of capable leaders. He’s one of the capable leaders. It is time we need the service of such people. This is a very educated society. In an educated society people will think rational thinking and they want someone who can really serve, deliver their promises,” Azim said.
He also spoke on his role in the protests against the Government. Azim stated that he went against the Government, as he did not want anyone else to face what his brother had faced. He denied the rumors that he had taken up his brother’s cause, solely because he was removed from his position in STO.
“People can say anything, but I was involved in the case from the first day. People have to understand that we are not working for someone; we are working for the people. And state trading organization is not a government company; it is a public limited company. Because Nazim was framed I don’t have to just resign from the job which I was serving. As far as I know, I’m doing a good job. Why should I resign from the job? I don’t believe that being the MD of STO, I should come out on the road and join the demonstration at that time. But I was fully involved in Nazim’s case, I was in court and I was doing everything I could within the capacity I had to protect Nazim.”
Concluding the interview, Azim voiced his concerns over the status of the country and expressed his aspirations.
“I think the country is in a very dangerous situation now. If the government is not happy about that person, they can get a court order from the court and the Police can arrest him and put him into the jail. They can just create and fabricate anything against anyone. I think the people should not give the opportunity for the government to do so,” Azim said.
“My aspiration for the nation is that we should live a happy life, we should have safe roads and our children should live a much better life in the future,” Azim said.