Leaders of the ruling Georgian Dream-Democratic Georgia party gave their first statements after two competing exit polls placed the ruling party-backed candidate Salome Zurabishvili ahead of the opposition candidate, Grigol Vashadze.
Former Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili, who serves as the GDDG chairman, convened a press briefing shortly after the exit poll announcements, saying the elections “allowed for very good assessments.”
The ex-Prime Minister, surrounded by other GDDG heavyweights, said voters acted “absolutely adequately” in both election rounds. “The people understood their strength, that they have levers in their hands,” Ivanishvili noted.
“I think everyone would agree that Georgians demonstrated great maturity … the society showed that it has a very good sense and understanding of the situation, which can only be welcomed,” he added.
“I would like to thank them for this reaction. The rest is on me; I will do everything that I have promised and show you that you will have a government that serves you,” the GDDG leader also noted.
Tbilisi Mayor Kakha Kaladze gave a press statement next, thanking voters for their “high civic responsibility.” “I would like to express my respect to everyone who voted, irrespective of their political positions,” Kaladze noted.
“Today’s election was not a presidential election only; this was a referendum where voters rejected lies, hate, and violence, and backed the political force that puts individuals and their dignity first,” he added.
Kaladze then stressed the presidential election “is the best reason to reevaluate our performance,” and that the message sent by the public “is important” for the ruling party.
“Every day ahead of the parliamentary election has to be devoted to improving our performance and effectiveness of governance; this is the responsibility that has been placed on us with this election,” he also noted.
The Mayor also congratulated Zurabishvili on her “decisive” victory. “I am sure Salome Zurabishvili will be a very decent president,” he said.
Prime Minister Mamuka Bakhtadze echoed the message in his press briefing, saying the ruling party “has received the message that Georgian citizens conveyed.”
“We know what needs to be done; now is not the time for celebrations, now is the time for work. We are ready to address all our challenges together with our fellow citizens,” he said.
Prime Minister Bakhtadze also said presidential election was “a victory for the Georgian democracy,” and that it showed that the country is an established democracy.