Winter “deseases” in Kyrgyzstan

Winter is hard, especially when it is cold, and even more when there is no place to warm up.

What is just now happening in Kyrgyzstan brings back memories of my own experience in Bishkek in January 2018: No heat, no water and no electricity for several days. A morning shower – no chance, the tab produces a strange sound “khhhhh”. A cup of morning coffee? “Khhhhh” answers the tab in the kittchen. Any anyway, the coffee machine had no power.

It was minus 30 C when the power plant quit service in 2018. I was deeply shocked, but not so my colleagues, all local Kyrgyz, very friendly, very patient. They bought water in 10 l containers, placed them in my bathrooms and kittchen, and that was it. A few hours later, some went to stay with family for a few days, some went to friends living outside of the city, where you could heat small stoves and ovens.

What were, and what are the reasons for the failure of the thermal power plant?

As usual, I tend to say. Maybe no proper repair, maybe sabotage, maybe a lack of understanding how to handle the coal, maybe the wrong coal for the power station, and maybe, maybe, maybe. Will they ever really investigate? And if they investigate, will they publish the findings? And will there be consequences, and prevention for accidents in future?

Quite unlikely, because corruption is very widely spread, and uncomfortable truths have a hard time to appear in public.

The outcome is, that many people are left without proper heating, and electricity. Probably not the last time.

But I hope for people in Kyrgyzstan, that they will inforce open and truthful reporting, and will return to persuing the path to democracy with free media, and to improve their lives in future!

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