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Road infrastructure as a priority

By Messenger Staff
Thursday, December 15
Both the previous United National Movement (UNM) and current Georgian Dream governments claimed that improving the country’s road infrastructure was one of their key priorities.

The current authorities stress that over the following four years they will construct about 800km of new roads.

Major steps in terms of road infrastructure development were taken under the UNM leadership, as the issue was less important under the Eduard Shevardnadze government, which was overthrown through the 2003 Rose Revolution, led by ex-President Mikheil Saakashvili.

Since Saakashvili and his UNM team came to power, improving the conditions of Georgia’s roads was one of the government’s priorities, and a significant amount of both state and donor money was spent on this direction.

However, many of the new roads were quickly damaged, in some cases in under a year.

This fact, of course, indicated that something was wrong.

There could be several reasons behind the failure: the Government officials responsible for roads could have been misspending the allocated money; or perhaps those who were tasked with carrying out the construction work were not honest in the process, or there were some deals between the officials and contractor companies to appropriate money and provide poor quality services.

Many streets in Tbilisi which are described as new roads by the Government, are full of so-called sewage wells, which are no less dangerous for drivers than ordinary holes on the roads.

The wells are very often the reason behind car accidents, although no one in the government names them as a problem.

Constructing the roads alone is not enough, especially when huge sums of money - including budgetary money among them - are spent on the road infrastructure.

The Government is obliged to control the process appropriately and not spent money on low quality roads.