TBILISI, DFWatch–At the end of his two year run as a politician, former Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili has published an open letter that rebuts speculations about his future plans.
In the letter, titled ‘Postscript’, Ivanishvili writes that he only wants to answer one question which many people have asked after he declared that he would leave politics: is he going to manage the country from behind the scenes?
He recounts several ‘absurd’ accusations since he went into politics: That he is a Kremlin agent, that he distributed fridges to win the election or that he went into politics to save his own property and buy large hydro power stations.
Ivanishvili recalls the time when he lived and worked in Russia, and writes that his businesses were examplary and transparent.
“Opponents, also foreigners, attempted to find black stains in my business,” he writes. “I didn’t violate law or violate contract or even break the word.”
Ivanishvili claims that the most important thing for him is transparency; in business and in politics.
He recalls the time when Saakashvili’s government came into power after Rose Revolution in 2003. In the first three years, he met Saakashvili many times.
“Neither Saakashvili nor any other member of his party will be able to remember a single case when I appealed to him with a personal request or out of personal interest,” he writes, adding that he was giving advise and financing government salaries and the running of parliament with his fund so that the country could get rid of the corruption.
Ivanishvili also claims he didn’t interfere in the running of the country, for example by participating in appointing ministers.
He writes that his government members were free and he has never forced them to do anything.
“I never manage from behind the scenes. I won’t dare do that to my country, my team which I respect very much.”
He promises that his activity in society will be transparent and he will ‘of course have a certain influence’, and says he thinks it is important to be an active member of the civil society.
Ivanishvili writes that he doesn’t have any other interests than the country’s move forward and European development. He says everyone knows that he doesn’t have business in Georgia and doesn’t plan to have.
He promises to support, give advise and criticize the government, which he has created. The former PM thinks that leaders who have left politics still have an influence on the country’s life and politics, which is a common tradition in democratic countries.
As an example he says that former politicians often go on to become heads of think tanks, especially in the United States, which have some influence.
Ivanishvili writes that the greatest absurdity about his leaving politics is when people say he is scared of responsibility.
“I wasn’t scared when I decided to come in politics in the most difficult time,” he continues. “Then I risked my life, my family, security of my children and decided to save my homeland.”
He writes that he brought real democratic forces into power and left the government at its zenith, which many may not understand.
He said that ‘being a free citizen of a free homeland’ made it necessary for him to temporarily go into politics and for the same reason he left.