Governor, National Bank of the Kyrgyz Republic
Euromoney met Ulan Sarbanov, governor of the National Bank of the Kygyrz Republic, a few days after the revolution that swept president Askar Akayev from power. The situation and Sarbanov's response brought Rudyard Kipling to mind: "If you can keep your head when all about you/Are losing theirs and blaming it on you". A lot of people had lost their heads in the republic the previous week. Hundreds of young men went on a rioting and looting spree in Bishkek, as well as Osh and Jalal-Abad in the south. The International Business Council (IBC) estimates that about $100 million-worth of damage was done to shops and offices, only some of which were connected to the hated Akayev family.
Some government figures were beaten up in the excitement, including the head of the National Bank's regional office in Jalal-Abad. The looters also carried away cash machines from banks and shopping malls.
Praise for the governor
As a new group of politicians seized power, there were calls for the replacement of the central bank governor as part of the revolutionary clean-out.