Navbakhor Imamova: Government and people benifit from powerful Mass Media
Navbakhor Imamova, journalist of radio “ Voice of America” is the guest of the project “ Face-to-face”. She is a representative of the press who is accredited in Uzbekistan. Muslim Mirzajonov, head editor of Human.uz talked to her about today’s changing era, local and global issues in journalism, the image of Uzbekistan on a global scale and other matters.
- The word on your telegram channel grabbed my attention. The word: Global citizen” was written on it. How can you explain this? Is it a desire for freedom or professional ambition?
- This is who I am! I want who visit the channel to know that I am a journalist. “Global citizen”- who I am and my identity. Although I am from Uzbekistan, I have been living in the USA for 20 years.
I do not limit myself to a certain society or mentality. As you travel around the world, you realized that people have many similarities. Each matter is universal. An individual who can think logically know that a person is always in search of similarities and solutions to each problem are associated with solutions to global problems.
- A fish living in an aquarium has characteristics that are relevant for aquarium, those living in rivers have qualities that are related to a river. What I want to say is that you have been living outside Uzbekistan and changes in your character is natural. When one says” you have absorbed the western culture and changed a lot” How does Navbakhor Imamova replay?
- I take it easy. I just smile. The reason is that it is someone’s perspective. Being free implies to respect others’ freedom, rights and thoughts. If they start having unreasonable animosity towards me, I block them. We are human beings, I do not anybody to show hatred to us and you have the desire to protect ourselves as a person. My burden as a journalist is not to please people and say words that they want to hear but give food for their though and trigger them to come up with solutions to problems. If What we are saying is not positive, look around!
- It has been 3 years since you started working as an official representative of “Voice of America” Are you satisfied with your work?
- I was given accreditation, which means Uzbekistan is open for me. I may come here and maintain my journalistic activities, make reportages and interviews, hold conversations with official and non-official representatives. My main work is in Washington D.C. I provide coverage of a policy of the USA towards Central Asia. The fact that I work between Tashkent and Washington D.C is delightful. Pleasure! As I come here, I want to communicate with the government of Uzbekistan. I want to talk to them not only in front of a camera but also behind it. Our job is not just to make reportages holding a microphone but collect data and listen to people’s problems. Uzbekistan had been closed for us for a long time. Now it is open. We used to say the government did not tell anything. Today the government tend to tell many things. It takes time to examine data.
-What changes have you noticed this time? How is the mood of people, the educated and political elite like?
- I have witnessed them satin it is hard to make changes. When I came to Uzbekistan in 2017, the spirit was so high and everybody was excited. This excitement was owing to a new Head of the State elected and the reforms that were spoken about. After a year, we realize that changes and implementation of reforms are really hard. It is the obstacle that each society faces! People knew that desire is not enough. This leads to hopelessness. I am noticing the mood too. Uzbekistan is being familiarized with its strengths and weaknesses. Obstacles are yet to come. Reform is a constant concept. If there are a government and society, all of them are under some ongoing reforms. People always want changes (how explicitly they say is another topic). Importantly, there is an interaction between the government and the people.
- Officials’ tolerance to criticism developed during the presidential period of Shavkat Mirziyoyev. There are some pros and cons in this case…
- There is no other way! We have to listen to each other. If representatives of the government can not stand criticism, they can not reach the aim. The government takes advantage of listening to people! If people explain their problem well, they get an appropriate answer in return. YOU MAY WATCH THE CONTINUATION IN THIS VIDEO