Tajik president hands daughter key post

The 63-year-old president, a former collective farm boss, has led ex-Soviet Tajikistan since 1992. (File photo: AP)

Tajikistan’s President Emomali Rakhmon on Wednesday named his eldest daughter his chief of staff, in the leader’s latest appointment of a relative to a top post.

The president of the impoverished central Asian country appointed his 38-year-old daughter Ozoda Rakhmon to the role after she served as deputy foreign minister since 2014, Rakhmon’s office said.

The 63-year-old president, a former collective farm boss, has led ex-Soviet Tajikistan since 1992. He has nine children, seven of them daughters.

Last year, the president appointed his eldest son, Rustami, now 28, to head the government’s anti-corruption agency, after he had headed the customs service.

Also, Ozoda Rakhmon’s husband is the deputy chairman of the country’s central bank.

The president’s youngest son is still at school, and little is known about his six other daughters.

Earlier this month, the Tajik parliament backed constitutional amendments that if upheld by a national referendum would allow Emomali to stand as president an unlimited number of times.

As the constitution stands, Emomali would only be allowed to stay in power until 2020.

Tajikistan last year awarded Rakhmon the title of “Leader of the Nation”, reinforcing his burgeoning personality cult.

Rakhmon is not the first central Asian leader to give a top post to his daughter.

In 2015, Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev appointed his daughter Dariga, now 52, as deputy prime minister.

The daughter of Uzbek President Islam Karimov, Gulnara Karimova, once served as the country’s representative to the United Nations as she also dabbled in fashion design and pop singing.

But she dramatically fell from grace and her father reportedly placed her under house arrest in 2014 after a bitter family feud.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:49 - GMT 06:49
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