Compiled by Lera Khubunaia and Tato Gachechiladze
Friday, March 23Topadze: "I go with my party in the coalition"
In an interview with Kviris Palitra, leader of the Industrial Party Gogi Topadze said that he will not join Bidzina Ivanishvili’s Georgian Dream coalition alone, but he will make the move alongside his fellow party members.
“The last chance for politics in this country is Ivanishvili. You see, what kind of panic is in the ruling party? The government is so confused that we can’t to expect reasonable steps from them,” he remarked. “I have my party... and we will come together in a coalition. Bidzina and I have different views even on the issue of NATO. Some members of the coalition may not be of the same opinion, but today we must save our country and we should stop thinking about our differences,” he added.
Commenting on the rumour that Ivanishvili is no longer interested in new members of his coalition, Topadze responded: "Bidzina wants [more members]. I am going with him because I see the savior of Georgia".
Students hold protest near Ministry of Education
Students from various universities held a protest rally near the Ministry of Education and Science on Wednesday, writes Rezonansi.
The group claims that online registration for the student summer jobs program was conducted unfairly. According to them, the website had some technical issues that prohibited students from registering. They also claim that honour students and students close to certain members of the government were able to pre-register.
Representatives from the Ministry of Education declined to comment.
Demand for the project was so high that nearly all vacancies were filled out in the first 24-hours of registration; only 35 vacancies remain.
Channel Nine accuses government of blocking hires
In the interview with Rezonansi, Kakha Bekauri, General Director of Channel Nine stated that the company is being prevented from hiring journalists and building a network in advance of their April 1 launch.
“Of course, [the government] prevents us from contributing new techniques, [but] they also prevent us from searching for new co-workers. They are breaking human rights laws, as they forbid people to work in our company... Government officials visit all national channels and openly put pressure on journalists. Irakli Chikovani, Chair of the Communications Commission, went to Rustavi 2 and threatened all their journalists and warned them not to transfer to Channel Nine. All media representatives know about this situation. Also, there are contracts to sign and penalties for those who may transfer to Channel Nine,” Bekauri claimed.
“With regards to [prospective employee] Natia Lazashvili, I can only [echo] what Natia said – I confirm that there are some negotiations. I cannot name any names or at what stage the negotiations are now. As for the competition, pilot records, reporters, and TV anchors arrivals – this work is in process. As for the board candidates, this issue is under observation and soon we will reveal everything to the public,” he remarked.