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Red tape bordering on cynicism
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, 29 2007

Akimat bureaucratically relates to a plaque honoring a Karaganda schoolgirl

Karaganda resident Svetlana Gubareva, mother of the girl who died in the terror act at Dubrovka in October, 2002, decided to commemorate her daughter with a plaque. She turned to the monument commission, requesting permission to hang it on the outside of City School #38, where Sasha had attended classes. But, it seems, terrorism does not concern the officials, and Svetlana Nikolaevna's request was brushed off with a bureaucratic pseudo-reply that bore no resemblance whatsoever to common sense.

At the city monument commission, deputy Akim Almagul Salimbaeva examined Svetlana Gubareva’s request. Andrequired her to present the standard stack of documentation.

“It seems to be standard procedure, agitating you with all these papers,” said Svetlana Nikolaevna. “For example: an autobiography. Howcan a murdered little girl write her own autobiography?! Or a copy of her employment book. A 13-year old child?! And then materials relating to her special merits and service to the republic. So Iprepared the biography and provided copies of newspaper articles.”

ImageUpset by such formal treatment “bordering on cynicism”, Sasha's mother sent a letter to the city Akim, Islam Togaybarev. In it she explained (as though the city apparatus was not already aware) that the girl “was killed, and, therefore, cannot present her autobiography”. Materials concerning her special services to the republic, and Sasha's employment book, did not and cannot exist.

“Alexandra lived but 13years. All she managed to do in this life, her whole biography, can be summed up in a few words: she was born, attended school, and was slain.”

“Personnel at the Akimat formally examined the request, they didn't even try to grasp what had happened!” said Svetlana Gubareva indignantly. “Once more they remind me that Sasha's life proved to be so short, she never had time enough to receive her employment book, or provide services to the republic.”

Svetlana Nikolaevna hopes that the city Akim will grasp the problem and stop all “bureaucratic games and red tape”. Why, for example, do Ukrainian authorities understand that tragedies must not be forgotten? Twenty-one year old Vladimir Savinkin was killed in one of the Twin Towers in New York on September 11th, 2001. On the Ukrainian government's own initiative, a memorial plaque was placed on the school he attended before immigrating to the United States. His parents did not have to break through a wall of indifference and bureaucracy.

Despite everything, Svetlana Gubareva does not intend to give up.

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