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Opposition revise strategy as election talks cool

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Tuesday, April 5
The 'Opposition 8' has started fighting on all fronts according to a statement made yesterday.

“These fronts are: the negotiation table with the authorities, the international community, persuading as many people as possible that demanding just elections is the most important political demand in the current situation, inside collaboration and sharing of duties, “ Leader of Republican Party, Davit Usupashvili stated for Georgian printed media.

As it was mentioned during the interview, the National Forum would be oriented on the Georgian regions, Leader of New Rights, Davit Gamkrelidze and Usupashvili would be active on the international arena, leader of Conservative Party, Zviad Dzidziguri and Chair of People’s Party, Koba Davitashvili, would lead street rallies and Christian Democrats would fight from the Parliament’s tribune. As for the new initiative towards the authorities, it foresees that together with the common proportional system, based on which 75 proportional MPs are elected, another 75 to be elected based on regional-proportional system, thus the mandates in the regions would depend on how many votes a party receives in the region.

When certain elements of the oppositional parties are trying their best to survive the negotiation process with the authorities, the others are engaged in issues of revolution. Levan Gachechiladze, one of the leaders of the Georgian Party, talked about expected provocations from the government against a peaceful revolution. “The government is preparing simulated escalations, terror acts and arrests…The government will use everything, including media and even weapons, to prevent the peaceful revolution.” Gachechiladze does not rule out the possibility of simulated escalation resulting in tragedy; where innocent people may be killed. According to him, “a declaration of national consent” should be elaborated on by political parties, civic sector and citizens in order to avoid the above-mentioned provocations. At the same time, Representative Public Assembly is preparing for May 2, as they are talking of activating the process from this date; however do not deliver more information on their future strategy.

As for the authorities, on the one hand they rule out another revolution in the country, on the other hand they mention that negotiations with the opposition on the election code should continue, upon the “recommendation of the international community”. However, as it seems, it has no vital importance for the authorities, which oppositional parties they would be, “I hope there would be left oppositional parties, which will express a wish to negotiate with the authorities regarding the issue. Even if the greater part of the opposition boycotts the process, the authorities will follow the recommendations of the international society, “Parliament Chair, Davit Bakradze, said.

Based on analyst, Paata Zakareishvili,” to my mind, the current situation is not a blind alley, I think that the main aim of the oppositional 8 is to unmask the authorities (that the Government needed these negotiations as a mask, as if they supported democratic negotiations) and they managed this. I appeal to the oppositional 8, one day to stand against the cameras with Georgian people and demand the abolition of the model of majoritarian election system, which is profitable only for the authorities.”