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Ex-PM Nogaideli Warns of 'Deep Crisis' by Autumn
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 8 Jun.'09 / 14:14

Georgia will be in “deep political and economic crisis” by autumn and there will be either elections or a revolutionary scenario by that time, Zurab Nogaideli, who now leads the Movement for Fair Georgia opposition party, said on June 7.

Among some other former allies, Nogaideli was one of the targets of President Saakashvili’s criticism in his June 5 speech, when he said that he sacked Nogaideli in November, 2007 because of having “doubts about his efficiency and honesty.” Saakashvili also said that “unfortunately” Nogaideli had “earned much money” during his presidency, suggesting that Nogaideli was involved in the corruption.

Responding to the allegation, Nogaideli said while speaking in the public TV’s program, Political Week, that Saakashvili was “in hysteria”, leveling “hysteric allegations.”

He said that the President attacked him only about two years after his had quit the government and only after he engaged actively in politics.

“By the way, immediately after my resignation Saakashvili awarded me with St. George’s Victory Order and when doing so he did not tell me anything about my ‘inefficiency’ and ‘dishonesty’. He would not have even dared to tell me this; because his government would have fallen apart if he dared to tell me this at that time, because he would have lost January 5 [2008 early] presidential elections; he would have lost elections in Adjara and he would have not garnered 52% even through ballot rigging and he would have lost elections in the second round of polls,” Nogaideli said.

Nogaideli, who is native of Kobuleti, Adjara Autonomous Republic, and his party are not engaged in the ongoing street protests, but are campaigning actively and developing party infrastructure throughout Georgia.

According to the Movement for Fair Georgia a party requires a network of about 25,000 activists throughout the country to have a solid representation at the polling stations and to achieve success in the parliamentary elections.

Nogaideli said on June 7 that that for now his party is not yet ready, but would meet that target by September.

“The country is in a very grave condition; we are entering into the phase of deep political and economic crisis,” he said. “There will be either elections in autumn or some type of revolutionary scenario, not necessarily similar to the one that happened in 2003; that may be scenario similar to [19]91-[19]92 [referring to civil war that ousted late president Zviad Gamsakhurdia] and Saakashvili will be a creator of that, because it is up to him to decide in which direction the country should go. Add to that deep economic crisis, accompanied by delays in distributing salaries and pensions and all these will create a very grave situation by autumn.”

“I prefer elections,” he continued. “By September we will be ready to win elections, even under the current [electoral] system. But if there are no elections, we should force Saakashvili to hold elections. I hope there will be no need for revolution. From September we will start rallies to demand elections… He will be forced to hold elections, because his government is falling apart; people are very angry and we are on the verge of civil confrontation.”

“By September we will be ready either to win elections including in the condition of this electoral system or to start pressure on the authorities, which will force the authorities to call the elections,” Nogaideli added.

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