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Top Russian Governors, Heads of Major Ministries Made to Work on Road Crews to Learn Humility, Stay Grounded (Russian TV News)

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Nothing like a little hard labor to keep a man grounded! 

Top Russian officials got a lesson in humility by working together to build a 200-yard stretch of road...


Around 150 high-ranking Russian officials swapped their business suits for the uniforms of road maintenance workers. Governors, members of the government and the president's administration armed themselves with shovels as they carried crushed stone around in a cart, operated a road roller, and, in the end, built a 200-yard road. All of this was a hands-on training session before a State Council meeting dedicated to the development of highways.

Alexey Golovko is reporting from Solnechnogorsk in Moscow Oblast.

“Go on, go on... Enough!”

Today, a road maintenance worker gives orders to the governor of Irkutsk Oblast while the head of the Komi Republic works with a shovel. That's how the heads of the regions, having changed into vests, are getting ready for the upcoming State Council. The subject matter is the Safe and High-Quality Roads national program. But first, they're in for some manual labor. They are to lay 200 yards of ideal roadway on an embankment in Solnechnogorsk.

“This really takes me back. While I was a student, I used to build roads as a side gig.”

The roads now mean new technologies. A good highway is impossible to build without cutting-edge materials and equipment. The Governor of Tambov Oblast Alexander Nikitin is in charge of the quality of the strip.

“We're doing everything according to the recipe.”

Minister of Transport Yevgeny Dietrich definitely knows how to drive a road roller. Sholban Kara-ool is scrutinizing the flatness of the roadway. A little further, the Governor of Ulyanovsk Oblast Sergey Morozov is pouring more crushed stones. Their mentors seem happy with them.

“They're laborers like us. They are quite capable of doing the work. They're used to teamwork.”

The governors agree that professional managers should leave their offices from time to time.

Alexey Tsydenov, Head of the Republic of Buryatia: "Learning how to distinguish a high-quality road is very useful in our work. And they are teaching us now."

“Smoke break!”

A short break immediately turns into a briefing led by the First Deputy Head of the President's Administration Sergey Kirienko. Next to the hot asphalt, they are resolving the localization issues: the workers need a Russian-made device for measuring the density of the roadway.

- So, let's order the technical requirements.

- No problem! Producing an isotope-based device is a piece of cake.

The one to remind everyone that it's time to get back to work is the only governess here, the Head of the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug Natalya Komarova.

- Did you have a good time? Perhaps, you can join our team on the night shift?

- No time for slacking, right?

- Right. They won't pay us for slacking.

While the heads of the regions are putting a hatch in place, the workers are taking a sample of the roadway. It's a reference sample of ideal asphalt. At the State Council, they'll be discussing the ways to cover all the roads in Russia with asphalt of this quality.

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