Working trip to Vetka District, Gomel Oblast

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Topical issues related to the development of Gomel Oblast were high on the agenda of Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko’s working visit to this Belarusian region on 28 April.

Aleksandr Lukashenko said: “As I’ve made sure once again, we know how to do everything the way we should. I wonder why we don’t do the way we should. Or to be exact: why don’t we always do the way we should? This is what we are going to talk about today. Secondly, I don’t want to meet with you some time later only to see you make helpless gestures. I don’t want to hear something has not been done and we have to investigate why as usual. We’ve met today in order to avoid having this meeting at the year-end (you have no other time to spare and neither have I). We’ve met today in order to have an intermediate talk about why we don’t do the way we should and the way you know how to do things.”

The head of state remarked that he visits one of the areas affected by the Chernobyl nuclear power plant accident every year on the anniversary of the catastrophe. But more often than not the president visits Gomel Oblast, which was virtually entirely polluted with radiation in 1986.

Aleksandr Lukashenko said: “You know this oblast is no stranger’s land for me. It is virtually kindred land. I’ve always underlined at any forums, conferences, referendums, and elections that Gomel Oblast has always supported me more than any other oblast. It is home to hardworking, wise, tempered people, who overwhelmingly love this land. But due to the lack of control, due to whining about people affected by the Chernobyl catastrophe we relaxed and failed to notice how we started losing this oblast. How fraudsters and thieves started appearing among this huge number of hardworking and wise people. Their number is small but this process has to be stopped. This is why a new oblast governor and the president’s new authorized representative for this oblast have been appointed.”

As he visited areas affected by the Chernobyl catastrophe, the president has always underlined that the state will do its utmost for this land to live and develop. People believed that and stayed in the places they grew up. “For a long time I tried to convince you that here we will live a normal life as good as that in other parts of our republic. After more than 30 years we made sure of it because we already have statistics. I experience genuine joy when I see positive changes,” the Belarusian leader noted.

Aleksandr Lukashenko pointed out that the state had done a lot for Gomel Oblast over the years of independence. Five special Chernobyl programs have been implemented, the sixth one is in progress now. In 2022 alone over Br600 million was poured into the affected territories. In total, billions have been spent. Thanks to this money tens of thousands of apartments have been built as well as over 100 schools and kindergartens and thousands of kilometers of roads. Natural gas infrastructure has been built in over 100 population centers. Multiple various healthcare institutions have been opened, including a unique one. The national applied science center for radiation medicine and human ecology is nearly the world’s only facility like that. “You and I built it after it was simply abandoned and empty windows like arrowslits stood as a sign of mismanagement,” he added.