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Adjara Supreme Council holds inaugural session

By Ana Robakidze
Monday, October 29
The Supreme Council of Adjara held their inaugural session on October 28th, where the Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili was presented as the honorable guest.

There will be four factions created in the council; three of those will be made up by the new majority Georgian Dream, and only one faction by the United National Movement. The ruling party will create the following factions: Georgian Dream, Georgian Dream Free Democrats, lead by Sulkhan Ghlonti, from Irakli Alasania party and Georgian Dream Adjara.

The Georgian Dream was originally considering three candidates for the post of the Chair of Adjara government and only two nominees were left by the time Supreme Council session was started, Jemal Putkaradze, member of the Supreme Council of Adjara, and Archil Kharabadze, the chairman of Cartu Bank Adjara Branch. However, Ivanishvili and his governing party decided that Kharabadze is the best nominee for the post and he was the one presented to the Supreme Council. According to the regulations the council should approve the candidate within the following 10 working days, which means that no later than November 10th Adjara will have a new chair of the government.

Kharabadze told journalists in Batumi that in the case he gets approved by the Supreme Council, he will work for the future development of the region, setting agriculture and tourism as major priorities for the new cabinet. Kharabadze confirmed in his earlier interviews that he has no political experience and the nomination is a big challenge for him, however, he is going to listen to both parties presented and make all decisions only after the consultations.

Ivanishvili and his coalition have already decided on the four candidates who will comprise the new ministry cabinet of the autonomous republic; however, he refrained from announcing the names in Batumi.

According to the regulations, the chair of the supreme council is elected by the majority of the council members, which is held by the Georgian Dream Coalition, having received 13 seats as a result of the latest elections.

Avtandil Beridze, the only nominee for the post has been elected as a new chair of the lawmaking body, having received 13 votes in a secret balloting, while 8 deputies did not take part in the voting. The newly elected chairman, who was earlier a member of the Republican Party, promised to work for the benefits of the people.

Adjara is going to have expanded authority in the future. The Prime Minister is going to support the decentralization of the government and entitle a larger authority to local self-governing institutions in the regions.

"It is not correct to control everything from Tbilisi...We should develop our political culture. Decentralization should be undertaken as soon as possible," Ivanishvili told journalists in Adjara. The PM is going to maintain the major functions of Tbilisi. However, the power decentralization process shall start as soon as possible. Regions will receive even more rights than the Adjara Autonomous Republic currently has.