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The News in Brief

Wednesday, December 28
Court deprives Ilia Kakabadze of Maestro TV logo

The court has satisfied Gia Gachechiladze’s lawsuit and deprived Ilia Kakabadze of Maestro TV?s logo.

The judge decided that the agreement signed between studio Maestro TV and Maestro Studio, according to which Ilia Kakabadze’s company received the logo free of charge, was illegal. The protocol approving the mentioned agreement was also declared void.

As the judge said at the trial, Baia Gadabadze, the then director of Maestro Studio was not authorized to alienate the TV company’s logo without informing of it the company’s shareholders and partners.

Ilia Kakabadze’se plans to appeal against the court decision. As for Gia Gachechiladze, he is satisfied with today’s decision.

“The legal owner has been deprived of the intellectual property,” Maestro TV founder Mamuka Ghlonti said after today’s trial.

According to Ghlonti, when the process began, he knew they would lose the case in all Georgian courts, but, most likely, they would win it almost everyone in the European courts.

"It is not a court. They are trying to subordinate the media to the Georgian Dream. Very soon we will see very interesting processes. In particular, the whole media will appear in the hands of the Georgian Dream. However, sooner or later, justice will prevail, "- Ghlonti says.

The court satisfied Gia Gachechiladze’s suit concerning the Maestro TV logo today and deprived Ilia Kakabadze of the logo.

By the judge’s decision, the agreement signed between studio Maestro TV and Maestro Studio, according to which Ilia Kakabadze’s company received the logo free of charge, was canceled. The protocol approving the mentioned agreement was also declared void. (IPN)

Saakashvili: UNM Congress Will Be Held on January 20

Mikheil Saakashvili, the former president and the founder of the United National Movement, rejected calls for postponing the contested party congress, scheduled for January 20, 2017.

Davit Bakradze, who was number one on UNM’s party list for October 8 Parliamentary Elections, spoke on the need to reschedule the party congress in his interview with Rustavi 2 TV station on December 24.

“I would like to propose to the political council [referring to the party’s 60-member governing body] to postpone the congress… let’s postpone [the congress] and try to maintain the future and our integrity,” Bakradze said.

Bakradze also criticized the establishment of the committee for organizing the party congress in circumvention of the political council. The six-member organizational committee, which has been holding meetings with party activists across the country in the last few days, does not enjoy the approval of the political council.

“[The organizational committee] says that it requires neither consent nor legitimization of the political council, and that it will organize the congress alone, including the selection of delegates, vote counting procedures, regulations, agenda. In other words, the six-member group was created bypassing the 60-member elected political council,” Bakradze told Rustavi 2.

Mikheil Saakashvili, who responded to Bakradze’s statement with a Facebook post, rejected the proposal. “The party congress should be held on January 20 … and the party management should be returned to its membership. Any attempts of postponing the congress from those, who were rushing to convene the congress for December 27, are unfounded,” Saakashvili stated.

“I am joining thousands of our activists across Georgia [referring to his video conferences at meetings organized by the congress organizational committee] and I know full well that they are ready for conducting the congress with the highest of standards,” Saakashvili added.

The inter-party crisis emerged in the aftermath of the October 8 Parliamentary Elections, with Georgia’s former president and the founder of the UNM, Mikheil Saakashvili - who at that time was also the governor of Odessa region in Ukraine - questioned the overall legitimacy of the elections and calling for a boycott of the results. However, most political council members and future MPs under the leadership of Davit Bakradze and Giga Bokeria chose to enter Parliament.

The disagreement resurfaced after the majoritarian runoffs over the decision of the political council to elect a new chairperson. A majority of the UNM’s lawmakers were in favor of electing a new chairperson, while some backbenchers, linked to Mikheil Saakashvili and commanding strong loyalty of the party’s mobilized grassroots, demanded that the post be left vacant. After losing his Georgian citizenship, Saakashvili was deprived of the right to be a chairperson of a political party in Georgia, and so the party decided not to elect a new chairperson.

The political council’s November 30 decision to hold the congress with yjr participation of 7,000 delegates, as ex-President Mikheil Saakashvili desired, did not end the dispute. The confrontation has been particularly acute in social networks, with Saakashvili’s supporters confronting those members of the party who spoke in favor of electing a new chairperson and backed a more modest party congress with participation of 2158 delegates, accusing them of severing the party from Mikheil Saakashvili and its grassroots. (