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Saakashvili after 2013

By Messenger Staff
Friday, November 11
President Mikheil Saakashvili’s recent interview, in which he stated that the post of Prime Minister "is not too attractive" for him caused speculation in the media and among politicians. His plans for after his presidential term expires have been a matter of interest for a some time, and the most common opinion was that he wanted to move into the position of PM.

Until recently when asked what he would do after 2013 Saakashvili avoided any direct answer, saying that for him it was more important where the country would be rather than he, himself. The Georgian public does not always believe that politicians think more about the country than themselves, however. Georgia's current president may be aiming for the PM’s position in fact, and amendments for the new Constitution support this supposition since it would transfer some key responsibilities from the President to the Prime Minister.

However, on November 8 President Saakashvili told Euroactive that after being President, the position of Prime Minister wouldn't interest him. There have been different comments on the President’s statement--opposition MP Gia Tsagareishvili thinks Saakashvili has became the hostage of constitutional amendments due to the appearance of Bidzina Ivanishvili on the Georgian political scene, and this forces Saakashvili to give up his ambitions to become PM.

However speculations continue--if not the Prime Minister's position, maybe the position of Chair of Parliament? Tsagareishvili rejects this option as well, saying that for eight years he has been the sole conductor of events of the country and he would never tolerate sharing power with anybody. Analyst Ramaz Sakvarelidze thinks that the President has not made his final decision. A representative of the ruling party, MP Koba Khabazi, stated that the final decision on what Saakashvili will do in future is not known, and that probably it will be known only on the eve of the Presidential elections in 2013.

There are other objects of speculation as well, for example the fate of the National Movement as a political entity. Most opposition members and analysts agree that as soon as this party will no longer rule the country, the UNM will disappear, just like former President Shevardnadze’s Citizens' Union did. The National Movement denies this, claiming their unity will last much longer.