MP for Medhu Henveiru Constituency and MDP Parliamentary Group Leader Ali Azim has maintained his innocence and denied receiving any money from the MMPRC scandal. Moreover, he has vowed to resign from his position, if he is ever prosecuted.
MP Azim allegedly received MVR 1 million, as mentioned in the report published by the joint parliament committee on National Security Services and the Judiciary Committee, a list of individuals who were implicated in the grand MMPRC scandal and received financial benefit from it.
In an interview with a local news outlet, Azim denied receiving any money from the MMPRC scandal, and the Assets Recovery Commission has not yet questioned him regarding the case. He further claimed that he will give up his parliamentary seat if he is ever prosecuted for being implicated in the MMPRC scandal.
MP Azim also accused some selected individuals of trying to tarnish his reputation by implicating him in the scandal and noted that the initial list by Anti Corruption Commission (ACC) did not include his name.
When asked about the leaked text message conversations with Former Vice President Ahmed Adeeb and his close associate Mohamed Hussain going to Azim’s residence with alleged MVR 1 million, Azim said he needed Adeeb’s assistance to build the Kanbaalifaru resort which he had a stake in, and categorically denied receiving any money from Adeeb. Moreover, some of the leaked messages indicated that Azim was giving confidential information about MDP’s PG meetings to Adeeb, which he again denied. Azim defended his working relationship with Adeeb as a way to ensure a smooth running of politics and essential to keep opposition close.
Moreover, regarding the bag that was brought to Adeeb’s residence, Azim said that it was a gift for Abdullah Jaleel from Adeeb, both of whom have a close business relationship. He further specified it was an unnamed “liquid”, and not cash.
The list published by the joint parliament committee on National Security Services and the Judiciary Committee contains 119 individuals currently in various government positions. The committee also approved to expel any government officials implicated in the scandal. However, elected officials cannot be expelled, unless resigned or convicted.