Governmental reserves are spent unreasonably
20 January, 2011
Governmental reserves are spent unreasonably

Georgian political opposition accuses Georgian government of unreasonable spending of the reserves of the president and government of Georgia. However, the law allows authorities to act at its discretion without legal retribution. Governmental funds have been a subject of public criticism starting from their introduction after the Rose Revolution. Association of Young Lawyers of Georgia (AYLG) has been closely monitoring the questioned funds for two years and publishing an impressive rap sheet of reserves’ funds but no results but public sentimental

resonance ensued. “Before 2007 financing cultural events [or anything else beside natural disasters] was a violation of law,” Tamar Kordzaia of AYLG told GJ. “But in 2007 government contrived to amend the law in such a way that now “unforeseen liabilities” financed by funds can be everything including concerts, and we cannot say that government violates a law.” Accordingly authorities gave a vent to their fantasy and spend the special funds’ reserves at their full discretion financing luxurious shows and concerts against the backdrop of economic crisis in the country where one-third of population lives below the poverty level. Nodar Javakhishvili, Head of Economic Direction of National Forum political party, assures that the reserve funds of the President of Georgiana and government targeted to finance unforeseen expenses [like natural disasters and other urgent occasions] spend non-transparently mostly financing cultural events and sundry entertaining occasions. In 2010 the state budget allocated GEL110 million totally on both the Presidential and governmental funds [GEL 55-million apiece] and GEL 89.6 million out of the figure [81.4% of the total funding] was spent in nine months alone, Javakhishvili asserts. “GEL 19.5 million out of the figure or one-fifth of the total spending went through so called “black hole” of the Security Council. The remainder GEL 70 million was spent on concerts and other cultural events so important for Saakashvili regime,” Javakhishvili said on a special briefing on January 14, 2011. He also reminded that the Security Council above the mentioned GEL 19.5 million also spent another GEL 40 million during the last three years and demanded of the Trust Group [set up at parliament of Georgia to investigate suspicious budgetary spending] to research the issue where the money went. Meantime first ever in its history GEL 40 million was allocated to Georgian agriculture sector by the state budget of 2011. Based on Javakhishvili’s calculations and sources GEL 11.5 million [out of the questioned GEL 70 million] was spent on concerts and entertainment events staged by Saakashvili regime. He assures that all the concerts allegedly held free of charge for audience in Batumi [the Black Sea tourist haunt of Georgia taunted by government] last summer were quite expensive taxing each citizen of Georgia in fact. Javakhishvili assures that Only Cris De Burg concert was financed by GEL 1.683 million, Placido Domingo’s gala concert and show-concert of Maya Key both held in Batumi past summer were financed by GEL 737 500 and GEL 371 300 respectively. Sundry entertainment events held in Anaklia-Ganmukhuri [the Black Sea resort bordered with the Georgian breakaway republic of Abkhazia] took GEL 2.2 million. GEL 1.85 million out of GEL 6.3 million earmarked for tourism development by the governmental funds was spent on advertising rolls and clips placed at Ukrainian TV channels ultimately. Moreover, for some reasons the President of Georgia financed [from his reserves] a musical video-roll advertising Astana. This video is not showed to Georgian audience as of yet. Further the President financed the Independence Day event of Georgia at Oslo Theater by GEL 737 thousand. Moreover, the questioned funds finance the expensive and unreasonable business trips of Georgian MPs abroad. For example, business trip of Petre Tsiskarishvili and Giorgi Gabashvili cost GEL 24.7 thousands and GEL 35 thousand respectively. Javakhishvili [been an ex-president of Georgian central bank and ex-head of Budget and Finance Committee of Parliament] stresses that as an official he never needed more than GEL 6 thousand for his business trips.

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