21 March, 2013
Interview with Giorgi Margvelashvili, Minister of Education and Science, Vice Prime Minister

In connection with the hullabaloo about the Agrarian University, we spoke with Giorgi Margvelashvili, Minister of Education and Science, Vice Prime Minister. G.M. – For the coming year students will be admitted to the Agrarian University as usual… Insinuations about this topic were absolutely political. Bendukidze was deceiving the students and unleashing black PR against me.
Q. – Why did you decide to inspect namely Agrarian University? Wasn’t it
clear that all this would have political lining?
A. – Higher Educational Institutions are inspected for three reasons: regularly (after expiration of authorization term), on the basis of a complaint and when there are some details to be corrected in the evaluation questionnaire. This time the Agrarian University was inspected due to the complaint filed by former faculty staff. It was not on our desire but the complaint due to which we entered and inspected the University. Last year 8 Universities underwent such un-regular inspection. For some of them authorization was interrupted.
I didn’t know what would Bendukidze, who politically aggravated the story of interruption of authorization of the Agrarian University, do – there was a chance that he would refuse to correct the shortcomings found by the Authorization Council. It suited him to leave the students in the street and put political lining to all this. I guessed that it would be good to activate the project. It’d be a guarantee of Agrarian University students’ protection and in case Bendukidze observed the law we’d have a strengthened direction of agronomy at the Technical University. Finally, we got the best variant – the students will stay at the Agrarian University and in parallel this direction will be strengthened at the Technical University.
Q. – As assessed by experts, Bendukidze got hold of $280 million property for $4 million. Wouldn’t be it better to inspect him for this reason?!
A. – I’m not competent in property issues and neither have I seen the documents pertaining to some infringements. The Prosecutor’s Office is already working on this matter.
Q. – During the previous days you mentioned so many times that in the Authorization Commission there are people employed by the previous authorities that I thought you were skeptically minded with regard to them.
A. – Indeed I’ve changed no one either in Authorization Council or Authorization service, but it wasn’t my personal decision. It is continuation of the policy declared by Mr. Bidzina. In new Georgia people must be given a new chance and we mustn’t start political persecution of old cadres.
It was a politically motivated process and the main message of Bendukidze and his like-minded people that we are vandals closing Institutes on political motif. This process was prepared much earlier. The idea that it was due to incorrectly printed telephone number or inaccurately hung signboard that the authorization of the Agrarian University was interrupted was already inculcated. A clich? was prepared: Bendukidze- protector of the students’ interests and agrarian sector and Margvelashvili – students’ enemy and closer of the University; but PR and lies have short term. He who can’t see the truth today, will do it tomorrow. Not only the students but politically more-or-less experienced people were also deceived. The lie will always be defeated; when you are right you should never be afraid to say the truth.
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