Bidzina Ivanishvili, leader of an opposition coalition Georgian Dream, has been fined by the state audit agency, Chamber of Control, with GEL 2.72 million (about USD 1.65 million) for making “illegal” political donations.
The state audit agency, which is also in charge of monitoring political finances, said on March 20, that GEL 272,597 transferred personally by billionaire opposition political Bidzina Ivanishvili, who is the French citizen, to his public movement Georgian Dream to cover salaries of some of its members, constituted illegal donation.
The public movement, Georgian Dream, formally is not a political party but falls under the state audit agency’s monitoring because of the movement’s, as the audit agency puts it, “declared political goals”.
“In connection to illegal political financing… Bidzina Ivanishvili was fined with ten times the amount of the illegal donation [GEL 272,597] in accordance to the Georgian legislation on March 16,” the state audit agency said without specifying provisions of allegedly violated law.
This recent fine brings total financial penalties imposed on Ivanishvili’s movement or other entities and individuals affiliated with the billionaire politician for alleged violation of party funding regulations to GEL 6.62 million (about USD 4 million).