The Mystery Surrounding Prime Minister

Some large-scale changes in the state power balance are going to happen in Kazakhstan. According to our sources, most likely, these changes will take place from December 16, 2017 to February 2018 and affect a wide circle of state officials. The main mystery, however, surrounds the candidates for the position of Prime Minister. The wars for this chair are already fully under way.

The historic decision on changing Furmanov street into Nazarbayev avenue, in our opinion, means not only the continuation of Akorda’s strategy to create Nazarbayev personality cult but also the preparation for the time when he will no longer be in power, so his successor will be able to rest on his authority. No matter who the successor is, she, by far, is bound to be weaker than current President.

Therefore, the coming changes in the highest circles of the state power seem very significant. According to our sources, these changes are to begin after December 16, 2017 and end in February 2018 having touched a wide circle of officials. It is possible that current Prime Minister will be dismissed.

The abnormal activity of several influential figures including Nazarbayev’s “middle” son-in-law Timur Kulibayev can serve as an indirect proof of such developments.

In the past weeks, Head of NCE RK “Atameken” who earlier preferred to stay in the shadows, has been active in the media. His activities, among other things, included a public “grilling” of Prime Minister Bakytzhan Sagintayev and other officials.

The causes for such behavior lie, according to our sources, in Timur Kulibayev’s desire to appoint his ally, former Governor of Mangistau region and current Business Rights Commissioner Bolat Palymbetov Prime Minister.

Our sources estimate that Mr. Palymbayev has minimal chances for such career rise, however, since, in Kazakhstan, anything can happen, it is not beyond the realm of possibility that this is how the events are going to unfold.

We, however, believe that the scenario according to which current NSC Chief Karim Masimov, once again, becomes Prime Minister is a much more feasible one.

If this happens, it will be not only because the latter is capable of finding the right approach to Nazarbayev regardless of what his mood is. Today, Karin Masimov, thanks to his long-term experience as Prime Minister, is the most qualified candidate for Sagintayev’s position.

Still, there is one external factor that may interfere with this scenario. Recently, the foreign and the Kazakhstan media have received information on the police searches at the head office of Airbus. These searches were part of the probe associated with Kazakhstan. Later, the investigators from the Central Anti-Corruption Bureau questioned Airbus CEO Tom Enders and three other top-managers of the company.

According to our sources, the developments in France may be of serious concern for Akorda. Consider, in the case of the negative outcome, the names of the high Kazakhstan officials who had taken the multi-million bribes as a thank you for purchasing the Airbus products and services would become known to the public.

The international sources name Karim Masimov as one of the suspects. According to French “Mediamart”, his “reward”, supposedly, amounted to 12 million euros.

Our sources say that the mystery is enhanced by the fact that the French and Belgian authorities accuse a certain Kazakhstan oligarch who is well received in Nursultan Nazarbayev’s immediate circle.

One way or another, the personnel changes in the highest echelon of the state power the preparations for which are personally conducted by Nursultan Nazarbayev who has met with practically all members of the Cabinet, the governors, and the heads of the state agencies are likely to take place in the coming months. Soon, we will learn more about the individual players.

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