Kakha Bendukidze, who was described as “economic ideologist” of the government, said not only the opposition, but some within the authorities, would also be happy about his dismissal.
New Prime Minister, Nika Gilauri, said on February 6 that he would replace head of the government’s administration, Kakha Bendukidze, who previously held posts of economy minister in 2004 and the state minister in charge of reforms in 2004-2008. Bendukidze, who amassed wealth in Russia in the 1990s, has been a regular target of the opposition and some local economic analysts, accusing him, among other things, also for allegedly lobbying Russia’s interests.
“Yes there are some people who really believe that I am seating here and transmitting some information through Morse code to the Russia’s general staff of the armed forces,” Bendukidze told Imedi TV on February 7.
He called those Georgian economic experts, who have been criticizing his economic policies, “a group of idiots, according to whom my mission in the government was to strengthen Russia’s levers here.”
He also said that not only the opposition, but “some people among the authorities and some people close to the authorities” wanted him to quit the government post, “because my presence here was a spoiler” for some of their dealings.
Bendukidze said that with no official post he would now have more time for ESM – the Tbilisi-based European School of Management, in which Bendukidze is a shareholder. He, however, also said he was ready to give consultancy to the government if needed.
“Today Georgia’s economy – like the economies of many other countries – is experiencing the worst period in over, probably, recent fifteen years,” he said. “And this situation requires extraordinary actions and minimal number of mistakes.”