The messenger logo

Officials! Give us example!

By Messenger Staff
Thursday, July 30
The Minister of Infrastructure and Regional Development of Georgia, Nodar Javakhishvili, has appealed to people to refrain from frequently driving in Tbilisi.

He stressed that Tbilisi is so overcrowded that there is not enough space for using cars by each member of a family.

The statements came after the re-opening of works at the new University metro station.

Indeed, it is hard not to agree with the minister that there is no room in Tbilisi for so many cars. There are traffic jams in the capital at most times of the day. Here is another even a more important problem - there is deficit of air to breathe.

Unfortunately, it is a fact that we still suffer from an old-fashioned, Soviet-era mentality, when luxurious things are still speaking about “persons’ importance and respectability”.

In many cases, Georgians prefer to buy a car and show off while instead their family can starve during the whole year. That is why it is hard for foreigners to believe that 80% of Georgians live in poverty when they see lots of expensive cars on Tbilisi's streets.

Revised education programs and a good campaign to eradicate the shortcoming might be a remedy for combating some negative inherited traits.

When the minister tells people not to use the cars so often, it is easy to sympathize with his sentiments; however, it would be much better if the minister makes the same statements in regards to his fellow officials first of all.

As a rule, our officials prefer to sit in luxurious cars and move from one site to another. It is quite impossible to meet any official in the street, on public transport and other every-day locations.

They are just locked in their cars without any natural, daily contact with the people who elect them.

On the one hand, using such big cars that consume much fuel that is covered from the state budget, and this creates problems in the streets and parking areas and disrupts contact with the population.

It would be better if the officials set an examples to the people by reducing the use of cars and popularize more healthy transport that would be beneficial for the increasingly airless capital.

It would also be better if the Georgian government thought more about ecological issues. Neither the previous nor the current governments seem to care much about these vital issues; they are mainly focused on ‘infrastructural development.’ Thus, they forget that development without health and air will bring no benefits.

Why is there the need of new streets and buildings (mainly ugly ones), if one has cancer or some other mortal diseases due to the heavy pollution and the lack of recreational zones?

We were promised by the current Mayor of Tbilisi about 1 million planted trees, and it is true that they planted several hundreds. However, they forget and very often neglect the fact that only planting is not enough; planted threes without appropriate care (mainly watering in due time)can die in several days.

Of course, sometimes it is impossible not to use cars. We have to pay much for the fuel that is believed not to be of high quality and is the source of many kinds of diseases.

The appropriate structures must work continually and check the fuel quality that is imported in Georgia. Unfortunately, Georgia still remains a marker for low quality products.