Tico Tuk-Tuk

29 Jan

Lord Venal is constantly roaming the world in search of new business opportunities. On a recent visit to Sihanoukville, Cambodia, he finally found a use for his garage of Uz-Daewoo Ticos – some innovative Cambodians have taken the body of the Tico and fitted a raised platform to the back of the car creating the Tico tuk- tuk!

Lord Venal has amassed an extensive collection of secondhand Ticos over the years on his business trips and election monitoring visits to Uzbekistan. This symbol of automotive excellence is considered by many in the know to be the finest car ever to come out of Andijan, Central Asia’s Motor City. Now it can have a new lease of life as the perfect way to cool down on those balmy days of chilla while scooting around Tashkent.

Not to be outdone, Uz-Daewoo’s other famous comapct car, the Matiz, has also undergone  a tuk-tuk transformation at the hands of the Sihanoukville masters. But there was no sign of a Nexia tuk-tuk cruising the beachfront boulevard.

Sensational Statue Offer for 2016

26 Jan

Lord Venal’s email box is constantly deluged with spam messages, but after receiving this unsolicited advert he was curious to know if any reader has tried this company’s services. As his father passed away not long ago and he was seeking a suitable monument for his (sadly rather neglected) Rutland estate, this seemed a gift from above (well, at least from the British Virgin Islands). But you can never be too careful. All advice on their suitability gratefully received.

Never forget what your Dad looks like….

Ever embarrassed at forgetting what your Dad really looked like? Need a reminder for the grandchildren of what a great bloke your late lamented Dad was? Now we have the ideal solution for you, available at competitive rates to suit any ruler’s pocket:

http://www.statuesofmydad.com

Arrange for one of our representatives to make a sympathetic visit, where you can discuss how you would like your esteemed late lamented parent to be represented. We offer a range of sizes, materials and styles to suit all tastes, from highly tasteful to extravagantly tacky. Choose a matching plinth to complete the package.

Once you have made your selection, we present a video image of the model statue for approval. We then manufacture the artwork using our skilled craftsmen in our own workshops, before careful transportation and installation of the finished product.

…NEW THIS MONTH… Buy 3, get 1 free!

Testimonials:

“Despite their name this company actually did a very nice statue of my Mum” – Mr. Turkmenbashi, Turkmenistan

“I’ve used this company more times than my staff care to remember – I can never have too many statues of my Dad. They are so uncannily alike, they’re spooky” – Mr. H. Aliyev, Azerbaijan

prezident_mingecevir_24022015_03

“Hello Dad!” – Mr Aliyev kindly sent a picture from his family album of his visit to his favourite statue.

“The statues provided of our Eternal President were delivered on time and under budget” – Mr. Kim Jong-il, North Korea

“Well, we might just as well have gone back to the same company again” – Mr. Kim Jong-un, North Korea

Newly launched….

By popular request, we have now launched an additional line – please go to our new dedicated website for more details:

http://www.statuesofmygranddad.com

Solving your location problems also…

Having trouble finding locations for all these statues of your beloved relative? Running out of suitable locations in your own properties? Not a problem! Our sister company can help. They will find parks in any number of beautiful cities of the world who will fall over themselves to offer a place of honour specially for YOUR Dad.

http://www.parksformydadstatue.com

Our specialist consultant can run through the various packages available, ranging from a simple installation in a corner of an existing beautiful park, to the Golden Park Package. This premium package is not to be missed and includes:

– full renovation of a tired and run-down park into a beautiful shrine to your beloved relative

– bulldozing any unsightly nearby buildings which harm the aesthetic ambience

– renaming the entire new park in your ancestor’s honour

– a complete set of top-ranking political, artistic and religious leaders from the host city and nation to grace the opening ceremony

– recording of opening ceremony for prime television coverage on all local and international broadcast channels

– threatening and smearing any ungracious local who fails to see the benefits of honouring your ancestor in a beautiful, prime city location.

Leader of the Nation Spat Erupts in Central Asia

14 Dec

Kazaxia has received this guest contribution on the fallout from Central Asia’s Leader of the Nation spat:

An unseemly legal spat is unfolding at the International Court of Justice as Kazakhstan sues Tajikistan over the right to use the honorific ‘Leader of the Nation’ for the president. Kazakhstan’s sudden lodging of the suit came as Tajikistan’s long-ruling president Emomali Rahmon was poised to sign a law designating himself with the contentious term.

‘I was gob-smacked when I learnt of this ridiculous suit,’ a Tajik diplomat in the Hague told Venality News, declining to give his name as he was not authorised to speak to the press. ‘There’s only one president worthy of the title, and that’s our esteemed and irreplaceable Emomali Rahmon. Indeed, he is so irreplaceable that he will never be replaced.’

But Kazakh diplomats insist that the slight to their veteran president Nursultan Nazarbayev will not go unpunished. ‘We have to stop this in its tracks,’ one told Venality News, also speaking anonymously. ‘Right now.’ He pointed out that Rahmon is a newcomer, having been president only since 1994. ‘Our illustrious president has a far longer and more dignified pedigree.’

The Kazakh diplomat also pointed to Nazabayev’s modesty, granting himself only immunity from prosecution for actions conducted as president. ‘Rahmon thinks he deserves immunity for life – is he going to go on a crime spree when he becomes senile?’

Long-time observers of the arcane world of presidential honorifics are sceptical about the claims of both parties. ‘While it’s clear that Rahmon nicked the idea off Nazarbayev, he in turn seems to have nicked the idea off Niyazov or Aliyev,’ says Ebenezer Prince de la Palace, Executive Grandmaster of the Institute for Pretentious Presidential Perquisites in San Marino, referring to the late Turkmen and Azerbaijani leaders.

Kazakhstan’s suit to the Hague-based United Nations court is also likely to trigger an honorific arms race. Kazakh lawmakers are already mulling two new laws presented by eager ruling party deputies. One would give Nazarbayev immunity not only for the rest of this life but posthumously also. The other would grant him the honorific ‘Leader of the Universe’. The proposers of the second law are taking no chances. They have included a clause to say that the title will be held eternally.

#Kazakhstan: A “Young Country” No More?

13 Nov

Kazaxia’s political commentator Gary Kefali has been In Kazakhstan to check out the celebrations marking 550 years of Kazakh statehood.

As Kazakhstan celebrates the 550th anniversary of statehood, is it finally time for the nation to shrug off the ‘young country’ label it has held for many years?

Who would have thought back in 1465 when Kerey and Zhanibek Khan set up the forerunner of modern-day Kazakhstan that 550 years later the state would still be referring to itself as a ‘young country’.

The state uses this label to conceal a multitude of problems related to human rights, press freedom, democracy and freedom of belief and assembly. Whenever criticised, the familiar refrain of “Kazakhstan is a very young country” is invoked by the authorities.

Now it seems that it is not so fresh-faced after all with its long history being celebrated in Taraz. As kazaxia suggested in 2011, it’s time Kazakhstan grew up and accepted responsibility for its actions.

Kazakhstan Hands Wooden Spoon to Latvia

13 Oct

Kazakhstan pulled off a sensational victory in Riga last night to condemn Latvia to last place in their UEFA 2016  European Championship qualifying group.

Islambek Kuat’s 65th-minute goal was enough to see off the Latvians and ensure that Kazakhstan edged their former Soviet Union rivals on goal difference in Group A. The win was Kazakhstan’s first in this round of qualification matches and means it avoided the wooden spoon which is now in Latvia’s hands.

The Czech Republic headed the group followed by Iceland. Turkey also qualified for the finals in France next summer as the best third-placed  team. The Netherlands could only finish fourth in the group and will not be going to the finals.

The win comes at a time when Kazakhstan’s all-powerful Nazarbayev clan are sniffing around the national football federation. President Nursultan Nazarbayev’s grandson, Aisultan Nazarbayev, made his case for the top job in football in Kazakhstan in an interview with to Sports.kz last week citing his extensive soccer experience.

Aisultan Nazarbayev, the son of the president’s eldest daughter Dariga Nazarbayeva and Rakhat Aliyev, who committed suicide  in an Austrian prison cell earlier this year while on remand facing murder and kidnapping charges.  Aliyev was a former head of Kazakhstan’s football federation so Aisultan Nazarbayev would be following in his father’s footsteps if he gets the nod for the job.

Kyrgyzstan’s Shailoo Show

4 Oct

It’s election time once again in Kyrgyzstan and Lord Venal popped down to Osh to observe proceedings. Here’s his preliminary report.

One thing I can say for Kyrgyzstan – it sure knows how to put on a great election. With 14 parties to choose from, the voters were spoilt for choice – a rare occurence these days in Central Asia.

In hospitality as well Kyrgyzstan is second to none. I will never forget the ‘guinea pig in a spiky shuba on a bed of dill’ which was served as part of the pre-observation luncheon feast.

Hedgehog in a spiky shuba, Osh, Kyrgyzstan

Hedgehog in a spiky shuba, Osh, Kyrgyzstan

When observing I rely on a constant drip of espresso to keep my senses sharp. Unfortunately, my hotel’s supplies of black gold were all consumed by my fellow observers and I had to move to other stimulants. I was amply provided with my own teapot filled with either green or white chai for the duration of my trip.

Lord Venal's teapot

Lord Venal’s teapot

While taking a break from the hectic schedule of observation I bumped into kazaxia’s all-purpose political commentator Gary Kefali. He expressed concerns that the voters were baffled by the huge choice of parties on offer and were unable to decide who to vote for.

This is in stark contrast to elections in Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and the USA where the electorate are offered a limited choice, enabling them to make their minds up quickly.

Turkmenistan: The President who just keeps on winning

25 Sep

Kazaxia has received a dispatch from the future looking at the continuing sporting prowess of Turkmenistan’s very long-term potentate Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov.

ASHGABAT, Turkmenistan – August 9, 2030 – With the first week of the 2030 Olympic Games in Turkmenistan’s capital Ashgabat already over, the country’s all-powerful President has stunned the sporting world by single-handedly heading the medal table. Still more remarkable, the 73-year-old Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov wasn’t even a declared athlete and is half a century older than most of his competitors.
With gold medals already in a slew of equestrian and motor racing events, Berdimuhamedov appears also set to win gold in archery, shooting and swimming events. He only took part in these events on the spur of the moment at the insistence of the ecstatic crowds.
Yet the ever-modest president is dismissing the adulation his success has won him, particularly with the home crowds. ‘My competitors have put up a good fight and I have to applaud their wisdom in the way they competed,’ he told television audiences during a four-hour speech from the medal podium. The speech was followed by a four-hour ovation.
Track record
Berdimuhamedov’s sporting success appears to have begun soon after he became president of his gas-rich state back in 2007.
In April 2012, in one of his early notable successes, he came first in a time-trial challenge racing a Turkish-build Volkicar he was not even scheduled to be competing in. ‘While an event presenter introduced the president,’ The Associated Press reported, ‘he received a request nobody in Turkmenistan would be likely turn down. “Can I take part?” Berdimuhamedov asked.’
The president even took in his stride being thrown from his horse just after crossing the winning line in a famous horse-racing victory in April 2013. It turned out the 150 men in black suits who immediately ran to his assistance from all over the racing track were not needed as the president returned to claim his prize.
And as he won the 2015 Alfa Romeo cup, the state news agency reported breathlessly: ‘The cars fly, engines roar, the distance between them gets shorter and lengthens again on the bend, but then the Alfa Romeo No. 7 breaks away from its nearest pursuers and rushes forward, to victory!’
The 2017 Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games saw the President sweep the medals board, again to tumultuous applause from an audience that could barely contain its excitement as long as the cameras rolled.
The Turkmen state media were similarly ecstatic over Berdimuhamedov’s victory at the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest in Andorra, and the 2021 Darts World Cup. A victory in the Scrabble Champions Tournament the same year was assured after a tense final, with the winning word ‘Arkadag’.

 

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