“Being a state official means gaining wealth in Georgia”, the Akhali Taoba states. Threat was posed to the possessions of state officials at the government session yesterday. Draft-law on “returning groundless possession to the state” formed in the Justice Ministry was followed by total indignation by the government members. They emphatically objected the draft-law.
The Justice Minister came out against the wealth accumulated with stolen money. According to the draft-law, in case a state official does not confirm the source of the possessing reported in his declaration of property the possessing should be automatically given to the state. The majority of government members called the draft Bolshevik. They were also unsatisfied with one aspect of the project according to which only state officials are to be viewed and not each common citizen of Georgia.
The draft-law was harshly criticized at the session. Justice Minister Mikheil Saakashvili was listening to the criticism quietly for several hours and exploded afterwards. He exhibited photos of huge houses owned by different state officials and even named several actual landlords. They are Minister of Economics, Trade and Industry Vano Chkhartishvili, Minister of State Security Vakhtang Kutateladze, and Head of Tbilisi Police Headquarters Soso Alavidze. Naming concrete names Saakashvili “did not follow the tradition, according to which certain political powers are never certain about who are the concrete seizers of state budget of Georgia”, the Resonance says. Saakashvili was the first official person to announce who are the appropriators of state property.
Detailed list of those suspected in corruption is supposed to be presented by Saakashvili next week. The Akhali Taoba presumes that the Minister will change his mind because “very many issues in Georgia are usually discussed and solved in the lobbies only”.
Such demarche of Mikheil Saakashvili was a kind of billboard for Head of the Parliament Zurab Zhvania’s group (including Saakashvili). “The group has taken the initiative of struggling against corruption which the opposition was always attempting to do but never did”, the Dilis Gazeti assumes.
“Finance and Tax Income Ministers were the only ones to share Saakashvili’s proposal but their support seemed general”, the Resonance considers.
As to the President of Georgia, he thanked Saakashvili for proposing the draft but passed it the Justice Ministry for further development. He did not participate in the aggressive debates occurred at the session. “The President is quite well aware of who has seized state property but in case he starts to talk about it and exposes his government members, then he will have to talk about the possessing of his relatives, and the issue will take us away”, the Akhali Taoba states. “Thus Shevardnadze continues standing in the middle of a chalk circle and Georgia still remains steady”, the Alia says.