President Received Verbal Whipping
17 February, 2011
President Received Verbal Whipping

Unusual Debates in Georgian Parliament involving Mikheil Saakashvili

Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili did not diverge from the tradition. He entered the hall with characteristically quick steps, being several minutes late. Before proceeding to his address, he asked foreign diplomats attending the event to stay till the end of the sitting, including the later part that was devoted to the debates. His argument was – “The question of democracy in the country is decided here, in this hall, not in some dark rooms.”

The President reported to the Parliament and the public for the seventh time. His address generated so much elation in the majority and MP Tortladze that the President had to be interrupted no less than 33 times to receive applause.
Saakashvili congratulated Khatuna Kalmakhelidze, Minister of Penitentiary System and Legal Assistance on her birthday. “Today Khatuna Kalmakhelidze reached adulthood and hopefully, from now on she can perform her tasks even better. I am not serious indeed because she does her job excellently,” – said the President and named those MPs who had been in contact with the Ministry previously.
“It is here that visions of the country need to be aired,” – these were the words that preceded the Presidential address. The President acknowledged that the biggest problems of Georgian population are inflated prices and expensive life.
150 millions of unknown origin for Agriculture
“I see a huge number of families who are desperate about increased prices. Many are scared of the future. They feel as if their lives are regressing,” – lamented Saakashvili. He advised to the MPs imagine the start of the day for a mom who counted every penny for family use and who then learnt suddenly that sugar and vegetable oil prices soared to 3 and 4 Lari accordingly. Besides, he suggested to the MPs imagine also an unemployed man who was at a loss what to tell his wife and his children and who knew that tomorrow bread would be even more expensive.” The President gave still more food for thought. This time he framed an image of a student and his or her hardship, strife to reduce expensive meat in the ratio.
“For me, every day starts with these thoughts,” – admitted the President, adding that his every thought is a thought of all these people. He promised to do everything to bring back hope to them and help overtake their despair. Yet, he did not fail to note that prices are on the rise not only in Georgia but in the whole world. In contrast to the rest of the world he vowed to take effective steps. “I am not going to become wet blaming the global nature of the process for everything. We ought to find a local solution. We have to protect economy from inflation,” – announced Saakashvili.
For that to happen, he promised to the population to distribute first of all 30-Lari food vouchers. He remarked that just like electric power voucher, the food voucher could be given to another family. He said this would be another small help of the State to the impoverished.
“This step will help us get around the worst quarter where prices are most unstable. Hence, the 30-Lari support will be a short-term retreat for every hard-press family,” – pointed  out Mikheil Saakashvili.
The second initiative foresees increase in the funding of agriculture. According to the President, the reason for the funding is the need to help develop local agriculture to counter rising prices. He said that if Georgia had had a much more developed agriculture today, the country would have stood up to the soaring food prices with more vigor; that is why the President vows to allocate 150 million Lari for the development of the sector. He claimed that Georgia will increase its wheat production by 35% no later than 2013, which in turn would decrease country’s dependency on fluctuations of world market prices.
2013 replaced with 2015
In previous years the President used to set the end of his office as a deadline for this or other milestones. Now though, he specified the date in the year of 2015. All of his promises fall on 2015.
He pointed out that the major priority was creation of jobs because unemployment was a single major hindering factor on the way to the country’s development. Simultaneously he highlighted ongoing construction of roads, railway lines, and gasification.
“All these represent a guarantee of new jobs and economic opportunities for our people. Without them, there is no room for even dreaming of economic success,” – said Saakashvili. That is why all the regions will have good roads by 2015.
Talking about improvement of infrastructure in the country, the President raised the issue of water supply in regions. He promised that by 2015 all the Georgian towns and large settlements would be equipped with modern water supply systems.
In the same year, Georgia would have as much as 17 hydropower stations in operation. The President stated that construction of these stations would create new jobs and double electricity production in the country.
The year of 2015 would witness also completion of oil refinery construction. As the President noted, the Government is already negotiating the subject with foreign partners. Saakashvili asserted that the refinery would meet all the requirements of the country in oil products and help reduce fuel prices.
Debates in the Parliament
During his visits to the Parliament, the President was most irritated by Christian-Democrats. This year, he managed to restrain himswlf during the speech of the CD party member Giorgi Akhvlediani but lost his head (as pupils may do during exams) in the face of the Levan Vepkhvadze’s address and asked him - Vepkhvadze – to specify the source of what he was talking about.
Giorgi Akhvlediani stated that every year the President promises better life and future to the country but every year the deadline was put off to later years.
“Could you possibly allow an exception and give us adequate answers. Otherwise, debates loose sense. If the Authorities are not adequate, holding the ruling position looses sense,” – said Akhvlediani.
CD Party called President to look behind his own “distorting mirror”. If the President  looked into the distorting mirror, he would notice severe social problems, innocent people killed, millions of people subsisting on the verge of total hunger, injustice and so on.
“Experience it yourself – no light, no wood, no money. Then see if we really overtook Switzerland or it is the other way round,” – turned Akhvlediani to the President. He reminded to the National Movement that they must be thankful to IDPs that they are at the top of the state power.
The IDP issue featured in the core of another oppositioner’s speech. Paata Davitaia proposed to the President to choose those actions which would soften hearts of Abkhazians and Ossetians. Davitaia was content that last year Georgia succeeded on the international arena in view of the word “occupation” taking its due place in the diplomatic vocabulary. At the same time, the Government needs to give more attention to its citizens. In this way, Abkhazians and Ossetians would not be put off to turn their faces back.
The President interrupted CD Levan Vepkhvadze around the time when the latter was talking about the potential of the country to have cheaper gas than it is today. The President asked Vepkhvadze to name a country where gas is cheaper than in Georgia.
“You are lying fundamentally. Don’t you believe in God?” – appealed the President to Vepkhvadze. The Christian-Democrat though reminded to the President that Georgia is not using its agreement with Azerbaijan, nor is it making Gazprom pay for the transit. The confrontation between the President and the opposition re-ignited around the issue of corruption too. The speaker pronounced a word “elite corruption”, explanation of which was immediately demanded by the President. Details of elite corruption were explained to the head of Georgia by Giorgi Targamadze, leader of the Parliamentary Minority, who pointed towards the President Saakashvili as the one sitting at the apex of the corruption pyramid. According to Targamadze, there are two types of corruption: the first is when money goes directly into pockets, and the other is when tax payments go to the budget but its spending defies any control.
“This is the corruption, where you sit at the top,” – Targamadze  told  the President. As an example, Targamadze noted that the President had a nice web site where anyone could relish beauty of the Presidential Palace but there are no Presidential decrees on the site in fact.
“This is a sort of corruption when one cannot find and guess where the money goes,” – complained Targamadze. He advised  the President to change attitudes to the current problems or face mubarakization.


Other Stories
16 persons detained in connection with release of secret recordings
According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, 16 persons have been detained in connection with the release of secret recordings.
Eka Beselia: “You will not be able to stop me, to make me stay silent, to disappear me!!!
MP Eka Beselia has posted an open letter on her Facebook page, following reports of sex tape leak.
CORRUPTION PERCEPTIONS INDEX 2018: Georgia got 58 out of 100
According to the CORRUPTION PERCEPTIONS INDEX 2018, Georgia scored 58 and was consequently ranked as 41 among 180 countries.
83% of Georgians support integration into the NATO, 78% into the EU – NDI
83% of NDI respondents support Georgia's integration into the EU, - the poll results of the National Democratic Institute say.
January 25 – birthday of the second president of Georgia
The 25th of January marks the 91st birthday of the second president of Georgia Eduard Shevardnadze.
Jack Shepherd from the UK detained in Georgia
A British man who went on the run last year after killing a woman in a speedboat crash on the River Thames has been detained in the former Soviet state of Georgia - says Reuters.
Georgia recognizes Juan Guaido as an interim president
Georgia recognized Venezuelan parliament speaker Juan Guaidó as an interim president.
Georgian PM aims to turn Georgian into a center of the region
Georgian PM Mamuka Bakhtadze is in Davos to participate in World Economic Forum. He gave interviews to two media outlets – CNBC TV and Deutsche Welle.
Judges that served the violent regime of Saakashvili should not be in the Supreme Court, says Eka Beselia
Eka Beselia, a member of the parliamentary majority, held a press conference in the Parliament today.
Possible confrontation within the Georgian Dream Party?
Eka Beselia, a member of the ruling party, will hold a news conference in the Parliament at 12:00 today.
13 dead from swine flu in Georgia, emergency treatment to be free for all
13 people died from swine flu in Georgia so far, but there is no risk of epidemy, says Georgian Minister of Health.
Georgian president Salome Zurabishvili not ready for launching diplomatic dialogue with Russia
I'm not ready to give any advice to the legislative body about the launch of the diplomatic relations or dialogue with Russia
Georgia suffering the steepest drop in democratic quality in eastern Europe
According to the statistics for the Democracy Index 2018, published by Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU),
“Let’s see if you can wrestle with women”- Interior minister to the opposition
Female Police officers were mobilized in front of the Gurjaani District Court where the case of Davit Kirkitadze, the member of the United Opposition was considered.
Georgian citizens can apply for temporary residency in France
150 permits for young specialists as well as additional 500 permits will be granted each year to go to work to France.
Numbers of Georgians seeking asylum in Germany has significantly decreased
According to Ambassador of Georgia to Germany Elguja Khokrishvili, the drop of asylum requests has been due to recently taken steps.
U.S. Congress supports Georgia with a new bill
Unanimously the U.S. approved the act, which calls for imposing sanctions on Russian actors for the commission of serious human rights abuses in the occupied Georgian territories of Abkhazia and South Ossetia.
‘Horn wrestling’ between opposition party leader and police chef
Yesterday on the 16th of December, clashes occurred between Nika Melia, leader of the United National Movement and Teimuraz Kupatadze, head of patrol police department in the village of Velistsikhe, Kakheti region (eastern part of Georgia).
Salome Zourabichvili officially becomes the fifth president of Georgia
The inauguration ceremony of president-elect Salome Zourabichvili took place in Telavi, Kakheti (eastern region of Georgia) on the 16th of December.
Fight erupt in paliament between Georgian MPs during session
Verbal and physical confrontation has occurred between MPs in the parliament.
Famous Georgians invited at the Inauguration of Salome Zourabichvili
The inauguration ceremony of president elect Salome Zourabishvili will be held in Telavi, Kakheti (eastern region of Georgia) on the 16th of December.
Exclusive interview with Lincoln Mitchell, American political analyst and Georgia expert
More than 20,000 people responded to the appeal of the opposition and gathered in front of the former parliament building in downtown Tbilisi last Sunday.
The after-pains of the presidential election in Georgia
Yesterday evening, at a meeting with his supporters in the Philharmonic Hall, the defeated candidate Grigol Vashadze made it clear that he didn’t recognize the result of the presidential elections and called for early parliamentary elections.
National democratic institute publishes their findings about the presidential elections in Georgia
A delegation of the National Democratic Institute, which included observers from five countries, analyzed the election process.
International media about the runoff presidential elections in Georgia
Although it didn’t hit the headlines, newspapers and broadcast around the world report about Salome Zurabishvili as the first woman who became president in Georgia.
GEL Exchange Rate
Other Stories
On 26 May, Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, joined celebrations in the Georgian capital of Tbilisi
Violation of Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity by Assad regime has been strictly criticized
Exactly one year ago, Georgia was granted visa-free travel with the European Union.
Georgia’s ex-president president Mikheil Saakashvili's supporters managed to free detained Mikheil Saakashvili in the center of Kiev.
The US Ambassador to Georgia Ian Kelly congratulates Georgia on Independence Day.
The regulations on the introduction of visa-free travel for citizens of Georgia have been officially signed in Brussels.
The entire Georgia is involved in Secret Santa game, which means that people are sending gifts to each other secretly
The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia is taking part in NATO Ministerial underway in Brussels, Belgium.
A special squad has been mobilized at the 48th polling station in Marneuli, Kvemo Kartli region.
Two politicians in Georgia have come to blows during a live TV debate ahead of the country’s parliamentary elections, Euronews reports.
GEL Exchange
February 2019
Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28