President Nursultan Nazarbaev has named Kazakh first deputy prime minister Ahmetzhan Yesimov to serve as acting prime minister during the illness of the office’s incumbent, Akezhan Kazhegeldyn. On September 22, Kazhegeldyn departed for an unspecified European country for treatment of phlebitis, following treatment at the presidential clinic in Almaty. (Almaty Television, September 22)
Kazhegeldyn, 45, has been prime minister since 1994. Yesimov, 47, became deputy prime minister, also in 1994, and first deputy prime minister in late 1996, with responsibility inter alia for foreign investment — a success story in Kazakhstan. Last week, Kazakhstan’s National Security Committee chief Alnur Musaev vehemently attacked Kazhegeldyn on two counts: for alleged corruption, and for covering up his expulsion from the ranks of the Kazakhstan SSR KGB and from a USSR KGB school. Kazhegeldyn has also been accused of corruption in parliament, but without convincing evidence.
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