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Ex-PM pre-election TV show

By Tea Mariamidze
Monday, September 5
Bidzina Ivanishvili, the former Prime Minister of Georgia and a founder of the ruling party Georgian Dream-Democratic Georgia (GDDG), is sure that the GDDG party will win the October 8 parliamentary elections.

Ivanishvili made this statement in an interview on his own GDS TV on Thursday in Batumi.

The new TV program will be broadcast twice a week from Georgia’s regions, where Ivanishvili will be asked questions by local journalists. As the former PM said, the program aims to help people analyze the current processes and decide who to vote for.

“As a citizen I have the responsibility to care about my homeland as much as I can. We should have a country with equal opportunities for our children, for all citizens,” said Ivanishvili at the beginning of the TV Show.

According to the ex-PM, he expects the ruling team will have at least 100 lawmakers in Parliament after the elections.

He said that the United National Movement (UNM) and four-party election bloc, Paata Burchuladze-State for People Movement, are the main competitors of GD. However, he noted that the ruling party has no serious competitors.

“If GD violates any standards I will criticize it too,” said Ivanishvili.

Along with parliamentary elections, voters in Adjara Autonomous Republic will elect local legislative body, Supreme Council on October 8.

Ivanishvili said that he expects GDDG to win 13-15 seats in the 21-member Supreme Council of Adjara.

Moreover, Ivanishvili said that ex-President Mikheil Saakashvili, who is a governor of Odessa Region in Ukraine at present, and his team are to blame for the August 2008 Georgia-Russian war.

“If the UNM and Saakashvili had not acted foolishly, Russia would have been unable to enter Georgia. We would have maintained the situation that was before the war. As a result of all this we have encountered newly-occupied territories,” he stated.

Ivanishvili also spoke about the charges that he informally governs Georgia, saying he only gives some advices to the government members.

“I am one of the controllers of the government only as a citizen. Frankly speaking, I used to give more advice to Saakashvili than to PM Kvirikashvili,” he said.

The former PM positively assessed the current Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili and the Head of Adjara Autonomous Republic government, Zurab Pataradze. However, he disapproved of the actions of the Mayor of Tbilisi, Davit Narmania, saying “he has a communication problem with society.”

Bidzina Ivanishvili was Georgia’s Prime Minister from October 2012 to November 2013. He founded and later led the Georgian Dream coalition to victory in the 2012 parliamentary elections. Ivanishvili voluntarily stepped down from his position after his favorite nominee for the presidency, Giorgi Margvelashvili, won the 2013 presidential elections.