Bribery claims causing widespread division
By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Wednesday, December 22Confrontation among the opposition parties is still ongoing. One of the leaders of the Georgian Party, Leven Gachechiladze, strongly demanded proof of the materials published in Asaval- Dasavali newspaper from Nino Burjanadze( leader of Democratic Movement-United Georgia, former Parliament Speaker), on December 21. However, Burjanadze is in Moscow with Zurab Noghaideli( leader of Movement for Fair Georgia, former PM) to participate in the opening of the replica of the Glory Memorial, destroyed in Kutaisi a year ago, which also imposed additional blame on Burjanadze and Nogheideli from the authorities and certain oppositional figures.
Newspaper Asaval- Dasavali, published the interview of Badri Bitsadze, husband of Nino Burjanadze and the former head of the board Department, on December 20, where he says that Gachechiladze dealt with current President Mikheil Sasakashvili after the 2008 Presidential elections and took a bribe for to stop large scale street rallies.
“I would follow this issue to the end, if I could not manage to prove my trust, it would be my final will, for this issue to be clarified and my truth to be proved by my posterity. I would not rest in peace until the proof of their story is presented. I would bring the battle against unscrupulousness to an end, “Gachechiladze said.
On the other side of the story, the authorities and Burjanadze have not expressed their opinion yet. Presidents Spokesperson, Manana Manjgaladze spoke on December 21, “we are going to leave this issue without comment as it is not in our sphere of interests.”
As one of the leaders of the oppositional Labour Party, Nestan Kirtadze exclusively told The Messenger, “To be honest, I was not going to make any comment concerning the issue; however I would express my attitude exclusively for the Messenger. It is extremely hard to estimate the situation, however in political life such events take place. Any politician who is suspended for such a great political and moral offence against the Georgian people will not be able to walk freely until he answers all questions around him. However Gachecihladze’s issue is one part of the story, Nino Burjanadze’s position is harder in this situation. That time, Burjanadze carried out the Presidential duty (I want to remind the readers that Saakashvili was resigned that time) and the fact that she and her family members were taking part in hidden negotiations of the two presidential candidates, especially when if these negotiations were related with bribe taking, it exceeds all moral frames. However, this is something on which first of all Georgian citizens should answer rather than any oppositional political factions.” she also commented on the Georgian oppositional figures' participation in the opening of the Memorial of Glory in Moscow, “In general I welcome the opening of any memorial which would underline and remind the future generations of small Georgia’s greatest merit against the world. As for the Georgian politicians participation in the event, it is their own decision and the decision of the host, who decides who will be invited and who will not.”
It is difficult to believe one side or another, analyst Irakli Sesiashvili told The Messenger, “This is not a pleasant situation of course. When people are tired with the undemocratic behaviour of the authorities, conflict within the opposition makes the situation harder. It is difficult to trust one side or another, the facts must be clarified. In the event of the allegations being confirmed, all sides would have to answer for this and if it is not true and Gachechiladze was blamed without any fault, Georgian society should also know about it. I am surprised as to why the prosecutor’s office does not express any interest concerning the issue; I have the impression that the authorities are getting pleasure from the confrontation among the opposition.”