TBILISI, DFWatch – Answering questions on his Facebook page late this week, businessman Bidzina Ivanishvili said he will ‘fundamentally reform’ the entire justice system, in order to establish independent courts.
Ivanishvili was asked mostly about social conditions, unemployment, health and economy, but also said the courts and entire judicial system will be ‘fundamentally reformed’.
The businessman’s answers were general in nature. First question was about what his policy would be for cancer patients. The businessman answered that these patients need special care, and that the country needs a strong healthcare system to help people with serious illnesses.
Two questions were about pensions and the high prices on public services like waste handling and water supply.
Ivanishvili answered that the issue of high charges will be revised in cooperation with experts and prices will then be reassessed.
“This issue, as well as the problem of low pensions, will be solved along with the economic development and people’s real income rise,” he writes.
He thinks that it’s unacceptable that the minimum state pension is lower than the minimum wage.
Another user was interested in the problems of large families and whether there will be social assistance for them.
Mothers of three or more children will be given special consideration, and single mothers as well as fathers are also is a very interesting and important issue, according to Ivanishvili.
“They should have state allowances and concessions. But the appropriate charities and private funds should have their say in this case. We should provide enhanced conditions for them,” the businessman thinks.
“Don’t the unemployed need compensations?” Facebook user Gocha Tabatadze asks.
The businessman thinks that such compensations should exist, but in the form of incentives, and should be stopped after a while.
“The state should provide a flexible labor market for them.”
One question dealt with the problem of youth employment. The user suggested that they need a patron to get the job. Others wrote that if a person doesn’t know English it’s not easy for them to find a job.
“The only patron that people should have is people themselves. There are two main problems today for youth – accessible and good quality education and employment.”
Creating jobs is the main goal, Ivanishvili writes. As for English, he thinks that knowing English is really good and people should know the language. But it’s important that qualified people over 35 year should be able to get employed even if he or she doesn’t know any language except for Georgian.
Bidzina Ivanishvili thinks that education should be free not only for school pupils, but for students too.
“Uneducated people are a problem for the community,” he says, adding that free, good quality education should be accessible to children.
“Should a foreign citizen hold the controlling stake in the company or in a strategic or non-strategic company in Georgia?” was the last question during the session, asked by David Beridze.
The businessman answered that first of all, Georgian legislation is not familiar with the term of strategic object. First the term should be adopted and established, and then it should be decided whether to give this opportunity to them or not.
According to him, in the current Georgian legislation there is a list of objects that cannot be sold, such as including water resources, forest reserves, national reserves, particularly the importance of museum collections and funds, special importance to take and landing strips.
“But in reality they’re selling them as long-term lease or in other ways,” Ivanishvili explains, and adds that this problem should be solved.
I will fundamentally reform judicial authorities. The courts will be independent –Bidzina Ivanishvili
The debate continued into the evening with a question to Ivanishvili about religion and whether the Georgian orthodox faith will become state religion or not.
“I think that honest belief and religiousness is not dependant on legal status for the orthodox religion. Relations between the state and the Orthodox Church should be based on an agreement concluded between them.”
He answered that he considers unacceptable any discreditation of the religion by the government as well as speculation by political actors on religious topics.
In his answers the businessman says that all political officials who break the law should be punished in a country ruled by law; but it should be decided by independent courts and shouldn’t become some kind of political revenge.
Ivanishvili says that he and his team are not going to integrate Georgia into the Eurasian Union; the goal is Euro Atlantic integration.
“Our aim is EU membership, which means a developed economy and high quality democracy.”
Radio Ucnobi FM asked what will be his first political step after his inevitable coming into power.
“A competent, qualified, politically sound government made up of professionals,” he answers.
Again Radio Ucnobi FM asked whether Giorgi Kodua, Sky Georgia’s managing director, will be among the businessman’s ranks or not, but he answered that this issue will not be subject to discussion.
Ivanishvili was asked about his strategy of fighting against the so–called elite corruption. Again he focuses on free media, independent courts, transparency and an active non-governmental sector – all contributing to the fight against the so-called elite corruption.
Do you plan a large-scale amnesty after coming into power? – one of the Facebook users asks.
Ivanishvili answers that the new government will be followed by fundamental reforms of the judicial authorities. The courts will become independent.
On the question how he is going to let emigrants return to Georgia, he answers that the reason they have left the country is that ‘they weren’t able to provide for their families through honest labor, and these people will come back because of their desire for the country to offer them worthy jobs.”
He thinks it’s important to use the professional potential of Georgian citizens living abroad.
“Also it’s important to encourage the citizens, who can invest in their own country.”
Again asked about overcoming unemployment, Ivanishvili thinks that it’s important to support the foreign investments in the country. But also the spheres which have a big perspective and has a lack of employment should be developed. Agriculture development is also important, according to him.