TBILISI, DFWatch – Saakashvili’s main competitor Bidzina Ivanishvili has announced 15 majoritarian candidates that will stand in single mandate districts around in the different regions of Georgia.
During rallies in May, the Georgian Dream coalition announced 19 candidates. The rest of the majoritarian candidates will be announced in the near future, including who will be their candidate in Tbilisi.
Bidzina Ivanishvili, unofficial leader of the coalition, presented the new candidates Thursday at the central office of Georgian Dream.
According to Georgian legislation, 73 majoritarian members of parliament should be elected throughout the country, ten of them from the capital Tbilisi.
Among the majoritarian candidates are Zurab Zviadauri, Olympic judo champion, who will represent Akhmeta, a small town in eastern Georgia. This is the second popular Georgian sportsman to be nominated as a majoritarian candidate for the opposition movement, the first one being Kakhi Kaladze, a football player who played for Milan in the UEFA Super Cup and the FIFA Club World Cup. He will represent Samtredia in western Georgia.
Levan Izoria will be the candidate for Chkhorotsku, a region in western Georgia. Izoria is from the party lead by Irakli Alasania, who used to be Georgia’s Ambassador to the UN. Izoria is a lawyer and used to work at Interior Ministry, during a period when police reform was started and while presenting him Ivanishvili spoke about his merits in those times.
“This person is a very successful lawyer, a coordinator of reforms of law enforcement bodies, a former Rector of the Interior Ministry’s Police Academy and his years are related to police reform, which until is today considered one of the most successful reform. The result of his work was a successful police reform, even though some people want to relate all of this to Merabishvili only. In fact, this man implemented that successful reform, and since he left, you see how politicized a police we got now thanks to Merabishvili and Saakashvili,” Ivanishvili said today.
Paata Zakareishvili, representative of the Republican Party was named as majoritarian candidate in Tskhaltubo, western Georgia. He works on Conflict Issues and Ivanishvili focused on his activity.
The rest of the candidates are: Signagi – Gela Gelashvili, Dedoplistskharo – Aleksandre Tamazashvili, Lagodekhi – Luka Kurtanidze, Kvareli – Davit Kevkhishvili, Akhmeta – Zurab Zviadauri, Borjomi – Gedevan Pophkadze, Akhaltsikhe – Guram Kutaladze, Adigeni – Bidzina Gujabidze, Aspindza – Temur Maisuradze, Oni – Tamaz Japaridze, Mestia – Viktor Japaridze, Terjola – Omar Nishnianidze, Sachkhere – Manana Kobakhidze, Vani – Goderdzi Tkeshelashvili, Tskhaltubo – Paata Zakareisvhili, Khobi – Gia Bukia, Chkhorotsku – Levan Izoria.
There have been rumours in social media that the seletion of candidates has been a turbulent process.
Ivanishvili today responded saying that all candidates were chosen with the participation and agreement of all of them, although he admitted that it was hard to choose the candidates.
“The main principle we used for deciding on candidates was the right past of each of them, which wasn’t based on lies. Afterwards, we have taken into account their professionalism, principles, political experience and people’s attitudes towards them.”
Kakhi Kaladze played football for Milan for 10 years and won the champions league twice, the UEFA super cup once and the FIFA Club World Cup once.
Zurab Zviadauri competed in the men’s 90 kg class at the 2004 summer Olympics and won the gold medal. He is a scholarship holder with the Olympic Solidarity program. He also won two silver medals in the world championships in 2001 and 2003 and a bronze medal in European championship in 2002.