Karim Masimov and 18 years of solitude

Soon it will be two years since the former head of the National Security Committee of Kazakhstan, Karim Masimov, has been behind bars – first under arrest, and only then as a convicted person for treason and abuse of power.

People talk about him less and less in the news, Masimov is remembered less and less by members of his team, whom he carefully selected and placed in the positions he needed. Some of them fell from office, some ended up in prison after their boss, and some hid until better times, which we hope will never come for them.

Let’s remember some of the players from Masimov’s team. Who are they, where are they, what do they do, why didn’t they try to support their boss?

The first to be targeted were former deputies of the ex-head of the National Security Committee Anuar Sadykulov, Daulet Ergozhin and Marat Osipov. They kept Masimov company in the dock, received their sentences, lost their general’s shoulder straps and state awards, and had serious amounts of money confiscated. So now they have no time for intrigue, they would rather jump out themselves.

Next on the list is ex-Prime Minister Askar Mamin. He and Karim Masimov are connected not only by common state and personal affairs, but also by long-standing friendship; both studied in the same class at one of the most prestigious schools in Kazakhstan. However, after the arrest of the former head of the National Security Committee, Mamin not only did not try to somehow defend him, but he himself disappeared from the radar.

Askar Zhumagaliev was the Minister of Transport and Digital Development, and the Deputy Prime Minister in charge of digitalization. But in 2020, Antikor opened two criminal cases against high-ranking officials of the Ministry of Digital Development and Zhumagaliev had to be urgently evacuated from the department. The all-powerful patron saved Masimov from under attack and even assisted in his appointment to the post of ambassador to Holland, where he could sit out in comfort and safety.

There is also a “prodigal son” in Masimov’s team – former akim of Shymkent Gabidulla Abdrakhimov. He constantly got into loud scandals, but for the time being Karim Masimov pulled him out. But after Abdrakhimov tried to intervene in the high-profile case of the beating of a young guy by an influential businessman and was caught wanting to put the brakes on the story, Masimov’s patience ran out. Abdrakhimov was sent to the post of akim of Shymkent, but he did not stay there either, leaving his post after carelessly posting a video on social networks in front of a fashionable hotel in central London.

Masimov did not give up here either, first he was appointed to the position of adviser to the prime minister, and later as vice minister of culture and sports. But even here he can’t work calmly, Bolat Nazarbayev’s “talker” Dinara Alzhan said that she received diamond earrings worth 20 thousand dollars and 70 thousand dollars in cash as a gift from Abdrakhimov. Abdrakhimov again had to make excuses, let alone think about his former boss.

What can I say, Nursultan Nazarbayev himself, who for many years promoted the ex-head of the National Security Committee up the career ladder, complained: “Masimov worked with me for many years. But did Jesus Christ know that Judas sitting next to him was a traitor…”

I wonder what it’s like to see your teammates try to pretend you never existed in their lives? Today Karim Masimov knows the answer to this question. Even those people from his team who are now far from Kazakhstan are in no hurry to support him. So he faces 18 years of solitude.