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New Prime Minister Fires Governors

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Friday, July 27
Prime Minister Mamuka Bakhtadze fired five governors on Thursday. The change came after the decrease of the number of ministries from 14 to 11 and changing of three ministers.

Bakhtadze stated at a briefing that the governors of Shida Kartli, Mtskheta-Mtianeti, Samegrelo-Zemo Svaneti, Kvemo Kartli and Samtskhe-Javakheti have been fired.

Bakhtadze said that new governors of the regions, as well as Imereti region [who quit earlier], will be nominated in the coming days.

“Based on the goals our government has announced, new approaches are necessary in terms of regional management and coordination with the central government,” Bakhtadze said.

Bakhtadze also presented former Minister of Refugees Sozar Subari as a head of a new state agency at the government of Georgia headquarters in charge of managing regional issues.

“I have repeatedly said that, unfortunately, the existing regional management system has not been able to answer the challenges we have in regions. Most of our initiatives aim at implementing new projects in the regions so that we can improve the quality of life in the regions.

“Therefore, we have decided the agency to be under the supervision of the prime minister in order to have feedback and direct communication with the society more effectively and I am sure Sozar will help me in this direction, “Bakhtadze said.

The opposition believes that the main reason of the dismissal of the governors was their connection with Giorgi Kvirikashvili, who quit his post in June due to the disagreement with the Georgian Dream ruling party founder Bidzina Ivanishvili.

The opposition has advised Bakhtadze to be “cautious” as Ivanishvili “is changing his attitudes and mood quite quickly.”