A group of thirteen non-parliamentary opposition parties are concerned over the “uneven and discriminatory pre-election environment,” and call on the international and local observer organizations to consider that in their assessments, the parties stated in their joint appeal on October 10.
The non-parliamentary parties said in their statement that Channel Two of the Georgian Public Broadcaster, which had been “traditionally” used by the opposition for conveying their positions to the voters, has shut down all political programs before the municipal elections, and also noted that the only Tbilisi mayoral debates on GPB’s Channel One would be held just two days before the Election Day.
The opposition parties spoke about other television channels as well, saying that the Maestro TV, “one of the strongest independent television stations in Georgia,” is “practically merged into the state-controlled media holding.” The Imedi TV, according to the statement, has turned into “an add-on to the ruling party’s press-center.” “The channel’s editorial policy, as well as the choice of topics and respondents, is entirely dependent on the propagandistic interests of the ruling party,” they added.
The non-parliamentary parties also touched upon the issue of party finances, underlining that the ruling Georgian Dream party secured almost 92% of donations in August and September. “The undocumented financial resources (the so called black money) that significantly exceeds the State Audit-registered data is a major issue as well,” they also noted.
The following parties have signed the statement: New Rights, New Georgia, New Christian-Democrats, United Democratic Movement, Democratic Movement – United Georgia, National Democratic Party, European Democrats, National Forum, Free Georgia, Freedom, Labor Party, Traditionalists and Political Movement of Law Enforcement Veterans and Patriots.