Parliamentary Majority Session was held in Batumi. The President of Georgia Mikheil Saakashvili opened the session.
“I want to congratulate you once again on winning the local elections. We received 66% of votes throughout Georgia, the same in Ajara, 68% in Mengrelia - these indicators are pretty high. These are the same indicators that we received in 2004, after the Rose Revolution – those elections were held on the background of Rose Revolution euphoria.
At the same time this responsibility is a heavy burden. 20% of our territory is occupied by brutal, impudent, sly, Mongolian type political force and by the leadership of our neighboring country; it happens when the economy is not in the best conditions and when there is economic crises all around the world.
Good about these elections – besides our victory – was that marginal groups and those willing to again enslave Georgia received a very good response from the people. The second good thing about these elections was that those parties, which came second and third, as well as others recognized the election results. This is very important. For the first time it was possible to hold civilized election campaign.
We are not political force that only gets active from election campaign to election campaign and rest after elections.
We, the National Movement are involved in permanent campaign for Georgia’s sake. Elections represent a test after which people evaluate us in fulfilling promises. We have special responsibility after elections, not before them. Now we are on the very important stage for our country. We must understand that there are countries, where one can always be a beggar but can still survive. Today we are in the situation when moving forward with small steps means that the country will still face an important existential threat. Today we have a very specific program in Georgia – either we will be successful or Georgia will not exist any longer.
We must start walking on four legs, we must refuse what we did until today or on the contrary we must continue moving in the same way and try to secure our country. Of course Georgian people made an exact choice. This is the continuation of our reforms.
Recently the President of World Bank visited Georgia and he is going to publish a separate banking book on popularization. Gigi Ugulava met him and took him sightseeing in Tbilisi. When we said that we would no longer be a post-soviet country we do not have a right to stop these reforms. You saw recently that our candidates rode bicycles together with the Mayor. When you drive a bicycle you will go farther than if you walk, but as soon as you stop pushing pedals you will immediately fall down. Georgia is exactly in this type of situation. We are on our way to become number one modern country in this region. In three months Batumi will become much better. In one year it will become a world sensation. This high tempo of development is very high. We need permanent movement forward. China had a very bad attitude towards Singapore. Today it is one of the leading countries around the world. This is the development model for Georgia. Everybody must need us, even our enemies. You can see how many Russians come to Georgia in order to study our reforms. We are examples of success for Ukraine and Russia.
I want to understand what are our problems in the system of education. Today we have 1300 principles of schools that are not appointed yet and Shashkin will speak about this problem. We have closed down mathematical schools and no one explained to me why we did this. No one could explain why we are not holding Olympiads in math any more. Everyone, who studied at Technical University know that the collapse of the system started in the 70ies. It was very difficult to get marks without bribing.
Next year we are going to give computers to every first grader. We must not only learn English, but Chinese and Turkish as well. We must develop in every direction, we must not forget French, we must not forget Russian. It is important to further develop our political system.
Politically we are Europe and we are moving forward to EU. On the first stage we must simplify visa regime and reach free trade.
At the same time we are working on the constitutional reforms. We gave a chance to the Constitutional Commission to write the Constitution under the leadership of the opposition. Demetrashvili will agree with me, I have met him just once in the beginning and told him that he has full freedom. I haven’t read the draft version yet, but the Venice Commission liked it very much.
We are transferring the Parliament to Kutaisi – this is a reform for so many generations the way we transfer the Constitutional Court to Batumi. Our country must become united. Many Georgian politicians used to discuss the issue of the highway and a monument on the Hero Square. This is why people speak about Rike Bridge so much, but no one speaks about Ganmukhuri Bridge. Transferring the Parliament to Kutaisi will kill this logic. There must be democracy in Georgia and there must be modernization. The reforms must become irreversible. We do not want corruption to return, we do not want old police to return, we do not want Tariel Oniani to come back and the Minister of Internal Affairs to welcome him at the airport with flowers in his hand. I hope that the group of reform makers will develop more.
We must continue working on the constitution. Whoever depended on the Russian economy, experienced 20% collapse last year.
I am so glad that they declared embargo on time. Our diversification is very important. American economy is surviving crises much faster, India is a very important country for the investments. We do not have a right to stop our reforms. We need permanent movement”, the President of Georgia stated.