Mohamed Azhan, 27, and Liusha Ali, 29, had been seeing each other four months before their relationship was cut short under tragic circumstances.
Azhan went missing, and two weeks later, his body was found in the thick vegetation in front of the Water Theme Park in Hulhumale’.
Liusha, who has a child by a prior marriage, told Sun that the biggest challenge she faced in her relationship with Azhan had been his mental illness. He had schizophrenia.
“Azhan had a mental illness. He had schizophrenia. Sometimes he would have auditory hallucinations. He would grow very angry during episodes. It was very difficult to make him understand it wasn’t real, that he was hallucinating,” she said.
Schizophrenia is a serious mental disorder in which people interpret reality abnormally. Schizophrenia may result in some combination of hallucinations, delusions, and extremely disordered thinking and behavior that impairs daily functioning, and can be disabling. People with schizophrenia require lifelong treatment.
People often have episodes of schizophrenia, during which their symptoms are particularly severe, followed by periods where they experience few or no symptoms.
Liusha said that bouts of anger Azhan suffered from during episodes had resulted in interventions from the police and Gender Ministry.
Liusha said Azhan frequently complained about his next-door neighbors in the Hiyaa flats being verbally abusive towards him. Liusha said that according to his family, it was just another delusion. He would often think people were talking about him when they weren’t when they were together, she said.
This was what happened the days before his disappearance.
Liusha said they would often meet in guesthouses in Hulhumale’ because Azhan wanted to avoid going home. They stayed in a guesthouse on September 16. Azhan suffered from an episode that night, and grew angry.
Liusha said that what triggered his anger was that he thought he heard the next-door neighbors at the guesthouse talking about him.
But she said she heard no such thing.
The next day, she woke up to Azhan holding a knife.
“When I woke up Saturday morning, Azhan was in the room holding a knife. He was very angry. He was very violent. He said he bought the knife while I was sleeping,” she said.
Liusha said she later managed to calm him down. She left for Male’ in the afternoon to see her child.
“After I went to Male’, he shared some very suicidal thoughts. He said he would give me his motorbike. And that he would send his belongings to another friend. Things like that. I couldn’t make much sense of it,” she said.
She returned to Hulhumale’ at approximately 03:00 pm that day, and they stayed in another guesthouse. She said that Azhan told her that his family wanted to admit him to a mental healthcare facility, and that he was very angry about that.
Liusha said that they fought because she started to believe he might commit suicide.
But Azhan later guaranteed he wouldn’t commit suicide, she said.
“Its hard to believe he might have committed suicide. But he made very suicidal comments that day, even before we fought,” she said.
Shortly after they returned to the room in the guesthouse that night, Azhan grew angry again, believing the people next door were talking about him.
“What he said about it getting loud and people arguing in the guesthouse was just him getting angry and yelling. He got angry saying the people next door were talking about him. That’s something he would always say. He would sometimes even talk to the walls,” she said.
“We fought at that point. It was over the mental illness. Azhan believed the people next door were yelling at him. But I didn’t hear anything. I told him I didn’t hear anything. He thought I and the people next door were colluding.”
Liusha said that at around 01:00 am on September 18, she walked out of the room and went to the beach to get away from Azhan. She said that Azhan followed her, and they both returned to the room after he calmed down.
However, shortly after, Azhan began yelling and swearing due to his hallucinations.
“I couldn’t sleep. I lay awake. Then I asked him if it was okay if I went back to Male’. That I needed to go to work in the morning. I said I would only go if he was okay with it. That was Sunday morning. He said it was okay. He said I can go. He said he would bring some friends over,” she said.
Liusha returned to Male’ in a taxi. She said Azhan made a video call to her after she returned, and that he had appeared calm. She slept, and woke up around 09:00 am. She had a lot of missed calls and text messages from Azhan. She called back. But he never picked up.
She shared some of the text messages.
In the messages, Azhan shared suicidal thoughts, made self-depreciating comments, and apologized to her for his behavior.
His last text message was sent at 06:05 am September 18. He last appeared online at 06:07 am.
Azhan was reported missing to the police on September 19.
Police, with the aid of CCTV footage, tracked Azhan’s movements from his guesthouse located near the Redbull Park in Hulhumale’ Phase I to H13 in the Hiyaa flats in Hulhumale’ Phase II, and back to the area where the guesthouse his located at approximately 04:53 am September 18.
He traveled to and from H13 in taxis.
According to police, additional CCTV footage they later received showed Azhan walk down to the beach near the Hulhumale’ Skatepark and then walk back inland and out to the Nirolhu Magu through the Skatepark area on the morning of September 18.
Liusha said that after Azhan went missing, she searched all the places where she thought he might be.
On October 2, she heard he had been found dead.
Liusha said Azhan had run out of his medication for schizophrenia. She said his physiatrist had been on holiday, and he had been unable to get an appointment with another doctor.
LIUSHA: UNLIKELY HE WAS KILLED
While the cause of death remains unclear, police state they have found no evidence of foul play.
Liusha said Azhan did not have any grudge with anyone, and was not connected to any dangerous criminals. She said she does not believe Azhan could have been murdered.
“But I can’t say for certain that it was a suicide either. Azhan suffered from severe suicidal thoughts. But I don’t think someone could have done something to him,” she said.
Liusha said she never saw Azhan using drugs. She said that Azhan would say he used drugs in moments of anger, but would later deny it.