Atsalim Idigov, member of the Assembly of People of Kazakhstan
Editor, ‘Ogni Alatau’ regional newspaper
For each of us, meeting with the First President was a lifelong memory. I had seven meetings with Elbasy in my life. There was always unique aura around him - light, clean, kind. Sincerity, accessibility, wonderful memory, ease of communication, the ability to relieve tension, a subtle sense of humor. The ability to make an impression. Then, I remember his words: "When a person is happy, he does not notice it. He begins to realize only when he loses that happiness itself". It was said that we Kazakhstanis are happy people, because we live in peace, harmony and prosperity. We do not notice it.
I acquainted with Nursultan Nazarbayev in 1992. The President was met at the Taldykorgan airport by Sagimbek Tursunov (I worked as a Press Secretary with him). He was accompanied by three or four people off the plane ladder. After he exchanged greetings with the Mayor, he came to us and shook the hands. Then he said with a smile: "Sagimbek, I see you have brave people in your team, even Caucasians." When he found out that I was Chechen, he asked: "nohchi vu?" In translation, it means: "Are you Chechen?" Suddenly I got confused, but then I answered clearly: "Vu" - "Yes". He patted on the shoulder, joked, nodded to others: “Let them think what we are talking about”
"Then, later I learned that Nursultan Nazarbayev grew up with representatives of many nationalities as a child, including Chechens. His father Abish also used to include words in the speech when talking to representatives of other nationalities and it was pleasant.
The next meeting was in March 1995 at the first session of the Assembly of People of Kazakhstan. We sat down, my place was on the edge. When the President came in, he exchanged greetings with those who were sitting behind me. Then he came up to me. We shook hands firmly and we had a short dialogue:
- How are you?
- Fine, Nursultan Abishevich.
- Which Cultural Center do you represent?
- ‘Vainakh’ Chechen-Ingush Center.
He looked at me carefully and smiled:
- I think we know each other.
- Yes, we met you at Taldykorgan Airport three years ago.
- I remember.
Nursultan Nazarbayev told us that his childhood was spent in an international environment. Kazakhs, Balkars, Chechens, Russians and Ukrainians lived together. They were like one big family. So they were created to strengthen friendship, solidarity.
“Good luck to all of us” he said, raising his open hands up.
In 2005, I met Nursultan Nazarbayev as chairman of the Chechen-Ingush Cultural Centre on the central square of Taldykorgan during the President's working visit.
When I greeted him in Kazakh, he smiled and said: "It's good that you speak the state language so well. It is great. It should become a powerful unifying factor for all of us. If everyone knows Kazakh regardless nationality, then we will become even closer, better understand each other".
In turn, having thanked the President for warm words, I gave a command to the musicians, and the square was filled with a temperamental Caucasian melody. Nursultan Nazarbayev looked at me: "Does this lezghinka have to dance?". I nodded my head. He went out in a circle with beautiful Madina. It was a spectacular sight! Looking at it, I thought: "It's great that we have such a Leader of the Nation, who does everything to bring people together, to strengthen peace and inter-ethnic harmony. 28 years the Leader of Nation Nazarbayev, as Danko, lighting a way, leads our native Kazakhstan to the worthy future.
In a year of the 80th anniversary I sincerely wish the First President long years of life and inexhaustible energy. That he showed the right direction of our direction forwar
d further. This is the mission entrusted to him by God.