Nino Burjanadze, the Parliamentary Chairperson, said she would not run for MP in the May 21 parliamentary elections linking her decision with a failure to agree on the ruling party’s list of MP candidates.
“The decision is final and it will not be revised,” she said in a statement
Burjanadze, who led the ruling party’s list of MP candidates, said: “Despite long and difficult consultations, unfortunately, it was not possible to reach a consensus over the National Movement’s party list. I think this is not a tragedy; it is not a pleasant fact, but it is not either a tragedy – it can happen in any democratic state.”
She said that she had tried to promote in the party list “new figures, new faces,” who would helped to reenergize and “humanize” reforms.
“I will continue performing my duties of the parliamentary chairperson, before the new one is elected,” she said.
Burjanadze also stressed that her decision by no way meant that she was going into opposition. “Everyone should know that – this is my firm position – difference in positions does not mean weakness of the authorities and it does not mean crack in the unity within the authorities.”
Although Burjanadze said that the country was on a right track of development, she also pointed out that there have been mistakes which should be immediately addressed by the authorities.
“The country is developing into a right direction and I am sure it will continue to develop in a right direction. At the same time, many tactical changes should be made and there have been many mistakes. We have learnt many lessons recently, which I believe should have been reflected in our policies as well. I also believe that reshuffle of the political team is necessary ahead of the polls… I think that political processes in the country needs to be amended and mistakes of the authorities should be addressed immediately – the process has already started to a certain extend. I am not shunning away from responsibility for actions undertaken while serving as the Parliamentary Chairperson, or as the acting president,” Burjanadze said.
“I want to wish success to the Georgian people and I hope the political team – together with which I have been doing so many things – will also succeed. But I also want to wish this team to take into consideration those issues, which are so important for the success of reforms.”
She also said that President Saakashvili accepted her decision not to run with “understanding.”
The Georgian media sources have been speculating for already a long time that there was disagreement over the party-list within the National Movement.
The deadline for submission of the party lists of MP candidates expired at 6pm on April 21 – at the time when Burjanadze was making her statement. The ruling party’s list is not yet known. It was only reported that Davit Bakradze, the foreign minister, will now lead the National Movement’s party list instead of Burjanadze.