Interesting this defense of nepotism should come as Central Asian leaders are on edge following the unrest in Bishkek, which was caused in large part by President Kurmanbek Bakiyev's relentless nepotism and corruption.
The head of the Strategic Research Center under the Tajik President, Suhrob Sharipov, said President Emomali Rahmon has the right to appoint relatives to senior posts if they have the qualifications, Asia-Plus reported on April 15.
Sharipov said the reason nepotism isn't so prevalent in western democracies is because of "demographic problems," as Asia-Plus put it, and because families often live scattered apart.
He does get one thing right, which should give President Rahmon some pause:
Several children of Tajik President Emomali Rahmon occupy high-level posts. His 23-year-old son Rustam Emomali is lately enjoying a meteoric rise in politics and is widely considered a possible successor.