Member of the Parliament, leader of the former Majority
Civil Georgia (C.G.): How would you evaluate situation around elections of the new chairman in the Parliament?
Niko Lekishvili (N.L.): Complications in connection with the elections exist because there were no initial consultations with the factions. Candidates for the chairmanship should not be discussed during the sessions. When the candidate was nominated, some of the factions did not participate in the consultations.
We could have avoided this. Back in September I suggested President creation of a trust group, which would have representatives of Parliament’s all political forces in it and they would have discussed every issue in this framework. Due to some reasons, which are unknown to me, idea of the trust group has been denied. But with this team, we would have avoided such an absurd situation.
Discussion of this issue has a strange political background. Discussions of the candidatures triggered strange group gatherings and thoughts about dividing certain posts. Disorder in the Parliament was rather expectable with such background of political bargains. On November 6 morning some political forces were in one team, but just few hours later their positions changed radically. This means that we are dealing with political instability. Furthermore, this an absence of the political principles, which means that this Parliament has exhausted its resources and it would be better if we have new parliamentary elections as soon as possible. If those who are in the Parliament care about the country, than the Parliament should dismiss itself and appoint the new elections.
C.G.: You mentioned political bargains. Some sources in Tbilisi say that the candidature was agreed at the meeting of President and Adjarian leader in Batumi.
N.L.: I do not think that this is true. President has mentioned in one of his interviews that he does not wish to interfere into the process of election of the chairman. Otherwise he would have said which candidate does he support.
C.G.: On November 6 factions of “Revival” block have been saying that they would not vote for Burjanadze’s candidature. It was more likely that Lortkipanidze could have their votes. But with Jemal Gogitidze’s nomination Lortkipanidze is one who lost the votes. Could you make any comment in this regard?
N.L.: I cannot say what is happening. I am not quite sure that “Agordzineba” would have supported Lortkipanidze. They have decided not to vote at all. Their move is pointed at the second tour of elections.
C.G.: Who has more chances for moving to the second tour?
N.L.: It is hard to make any prognosis. I do not know who would make arrangements with whom. I think that it depends on who promises more.
C.G.: You mean bargains between Shevardnadze and Zhvania?
N.L.: No. Faction negotiations have started. No one can control these processes any more.
C.G.: If the coalition of “Industrialists” and “Majoritarians” nominates its own candidate, as they already are saying, then Burjanadze will loose their votes. Don’t you think that these two factions only will not make such a decision? Concerned services of the State Chancellery, which have influence on the large part of “Majoritarians”, could be involved in this as well.
N.L.: I cannot agree with you. But the situation is quite absurd.
C.G.: Could you be nominated too?
N.L.: No. However, I had some proposals from several factions. But they started talks like we would vote for you if you do this and that. I am strongly against these kinds of things. I would never make a compromise because of a chair.