Uzbek Officials Unable to Keep Up with Workaholic Leader
At an international conference in Uzbekistan, a government official suddenly collapsed onto the floor.
Other government workers casually carried the man away.
Just a few minutes earlier, the man was seen moving from one side of the room to the other, making sure even the smallest details of the conference were just right.
The Reuters news agency reports that what happened to him was not an unusual event.
The Central Asian nation is slowly opening its economy to other areas. To get the nation ready, some government workers have been working 15-hour days, seven days a week, for more than three years.
Foreign businessmen who go to Uzbekistan face an unusual problem – making sure the officials they are meeting stay awake.
"He fell asleep twice during an afternoon meeting," said one Western businessman after meeting a mid-level Uzbek official.
Uzbekistan, once part of the Soviet Union, is home to 33 million people. Government workers there have a tradition of not leaving the office before their boss does.
But since the death of Uzbek President Islam Karimov in 2016, working all day long, every day has become a way of life.
His replacement, Shavkat Mirziyoyev, says he wants the country to move forward. He has asked government workers to be more responsible to the needs of Uzbekistan's citizens.
"When President (Mirziyoyev) came to power, he declared an emergency for (government workers) and said that officials would not rest until we please the people," said one Uzbek official. He spoke to Reuters on the condition of anonymity for fear of openly criticizing the system.
The president usually works long hours, so everyone below him feels they must do the same.
Perhaps sensing that his country's workers are tired, the president last month ordered officials to leave their offices at five in the afternoon on Saturdays and spend Sundays with their families.
"But in reality nothing has changed," said the same Uzbek official.
"I still go to work at eight in the morning and come back at midnight," he said. "Sometimes I don't see my children for several days...they are already asleep when I come home and leave for school earlier in the morning," he added.
I'm Susan Shand.
1.come back 返回
I begged him to come back to England with me.
2.stay awake 保持清醒
I tried to stay awake, because I enjoy talking with the girls.
3.came to power 当权；执政
The general came to power in a military coup.
4.all day long 整天
You natter all day long at the hospital.
5.His replacement, Shavkat Mirziyoyev, says he wants the country to move forward.
move forward 向前移动
We are in full agreement about how to move forward.
You want to move forward and say farewell in a positive manner.
6.He has asked government workers to be more responsible to the needs of Uzbekistan's citizens.
be responsible to 对...负责
I'm responsible to my board of directors.
The government will be responsible to the President alone.
这个中亚国家正在慢慢向其它地区开放经济 。为了做好准备，一些政府工作人员每周工作7天，一天15个小时的常态已经持续了3年多 。
曾隶属苏联的乌兹别克斯坦有3300万人口 。该国的政府官员有个不成文的规定——不能比领导下班早 。
他的继任者沙夫卡特·米尔济约耶夫表示，他希望国家向前迈进 。他要求政府官员对乌兹别克斯坦人民的需求承担更多责任 。
乌兹别克斯坦一位官员表示：“米尔济约耶夫总统上台时宣布政府工作人员进入紧急状态，并指示人民不满意，我们不休息 。”因不敢公开批评这一体系，他要求匿名接受路透社采访 。
他说：“我照样早上8点上班，午夜回家 。”他还说：“有时候好几天见不到孩子一面 。下班回来时他们睡着了，清早又去上学了 。”