TBILISI, DFWatch–The founder of Georgia’s ruling party has publicly dispelled rumors that he is secretly supporting the former prime minister Giorgi Gakharia’s new political party.
In a letter published on Monday, billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili called Gakharia a “traitor” and categorically ruled out collaborating with the party he founded.
Gakharia, who was the most popular among GD prime ministers, responded with an ambiguous short comment on Facebook.
“No one and nothing can stop the truth. Eventually, everyone will understand this. Again, without gossiping, we will unite for Georgia!” – Gakharia wrote.
His career took a dramatic turn in February when he confronted the political leadership of Georgian Dream over the arrest of opposition politician Nika Melia. Gakharia, who was then prime minister but lacked real political power, demanded a postponement of the police operation, which the GD’s political council did not agree to.
“Such an action of a high-ranking official can hardly be found in the history of world politics. Giorgi Gakharia’s steps in February was a betrayal of his team. And more importantly, it was a direct betrayal of his own state,” Bidzina Ivanishvili stated.
“I want to say with sadness that all this has caused me great frustration. The logical continuation of all this was the establishment of a political party by Giorgi Gakharia. His party has no ideological or conceptual basis, and it is clearly intended as a situational tool to seize even a small number of electoral votes from the ruling team,” Ivanishvili says.
Georgia will have local elections in the fall, and according to an agreement reached through EU mediation, if the Georgian Dream fails to win 43% of the total votes, early parliamentary elections will be called in 2022.
A few days earlier, the GD chairman Irakli Kobakhidze publicly expressed suspicion that Gakharia had secretly made a deal with Mikheil Saakashvili to overthrow the government through a revolution.