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Do you think Maestro TV programmes are a threat to the Government?

Friday, October 9
“Of course not. When a country insists it is one of the most democratic states in the world it should not have a problem with criticism and should not be afraid of different opinions either.”
Anano, teacher, 28

“As we all know Maestro is not widely broadcast throughout Georgia, therefore, a very small portion of the Georgian population watches it. Thus is cannot seriously affect Georgian society and in my opinion cannot be a threat to the authorities.”
Nika, student, 22

“I watched Maestro regularly when Cell Number 5 started as it was very popular then. This programme is still on air now but is not so interesting and has become boring I think. For me this programme has lost its popularity. Its other programmes have always been less watchable, that’s why I think it is not a threat to the Government.”
Gvantsa, office manager, 37

“I don't know any of the Maestro programmes, I don't take its programmes seriously.”
Keti, musician, 26

“What kind of threat are you talking about? Mamuka Ghlonti (the Maestro General Director) is an adventurer who can see very well that his TV channel has lost its popularity and that’s why he says that Government officials are pressuring the station. I do not believe it. He is just trying to attract attention and wants people to say, “Look, Saakashvili forbids freedom of speech in the country.” That’s absolute nonsense. Just look through the newspapers, where almost every article criticises Saakashvili and his administration.”
Sandro, economist, 41

“I don’t think they are any kind of threat to the Government but these programmes often cause irritation to society. I think showing sheer aggression towards any political side isn’t right.”
Lika, dentist, 39

“I guess it will be more of a threat if they put this TV channel off air. Maestro is the only place where we can hear the opposition. I guess muting Maestro will cause huge protest.”
Dali, accountant, 42

“I don’t think so, one small budget TV channel can do nothing vs. two or three nationwide channels.”
Gia, driver, 30

“I think yes - it is the only TV station in Georgia which tells the truth, and people watch it. I think the Government does not like this and will try to close it or do something else to stop it.”
Sandro, taxi driver, 27

“To tell the truth I do not like Maestro’s director, Mamuka Ghonti. I do not believe in this man and his patriotism. Some programmes are really very nice and objective, they will not frighten our authorities.”
Gaga, musician, 42