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Arguments over polling results

By Messenger Staff
Tuesday, November 2
On October 28 the results of polling conducted by IRI (International Republican Institute) were published which showed the current administration in Georgia in overwhelmingly good light. People expressed their trust in the ruling administration as well as support and confidence in the reforms carried out in the army and police and court institutions. Those questioned almost unanimously (98%) stated that they had not given any bribe over the last 12 months. All of them expressed confidence in Saakashvili personally as a leader who would eliminate poverty, unemployment and restore the country’s territorial integrity. So everything is well; the National Movement can consider its safe and secure and think about the transition of President Saakashvili into Prime Minister Saakashvili. In addition the polling was conducted under the aegis of USAID who ordered it, while GALLUP assisted in the process, which was conducted by the well established and respected polling institute IPM. Nobody could doubt the fairness of the research. However the opposition as well as the some independent analysts are challenging the results. The thing is that, as the opposition claims, respondents personally state while answering the questionnaires they had to identify themselves, and although confidentiality was guaranteed many of the respondents were scared to give their genuine opinions as they were not completely confident that their answer would not be processed in police or other state controlled institutions. None of the polling conducted even by the most reliable organisations will give you the real picture, because today the Georgian population is frightened, states analyst Irakli Sesiashvili. The same challenging opinion was expressed by the opposition leaders as well as other independent analysts.

Philosopher Zaza Shatirishvili mentioned that we today live in an imaginary reality and this research serves to create an illusionary reality. Somebody who plans it suggests that the reality is what they think it should be. So the question arises what is the real reality? What does Georgian society think in reality? Whether the October 28 published polling results really reflect the populations’ opinion or is this simply what the ruling authorities want. Most probably the country will get an answer to that when the opposition becomes more active and as promised starts protest actions. However there could be yet another version. The rating of the ruling administration is falling, however this discontentment has not, as yet been automatically transformed into support for the opposition forces. As one witty observer mentioned recently, the country needs change, thse ruling administration should be changed and the opposition also.