Parliament Speaker: “We‘re not going to join the opposition”

Georgia’s Paraliament Speaker David Usupashvili ( R ) met Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili today to discuss the withdrawal of the Republican Party from the GD coalition for elections., 31 Mar 2016 - 16:20, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgia’s Parliament Speaker David Usupashvili, who represents the Republican Party of Georgia, says the Republicans are not going to join the opposition. 

Usupashvili’s statement comes after he met Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili this afternoon, following the Republican Party’s announcement it would withdraw from the ruling Georgian Dream coalition and participate in the upcoming Parliamentary Elections independently.

We are not going to the opposition. We pledged responsibility before the country together [as a coalition] to run Georgia together. We are well aware of what type of complications might arise if [Republican party members] quit our posts or split the majority in Parliament,” Usupashvili said. 

He believed the Republicans and the Georgian Dream coalition would cooperate as this type of partnership was characteristic for democratic nations.

It is a process the country must undergo, it is a form of European democracy,” Usupashvili said. 

The Parliament Speaker reiterated the Republican Party’s joint aspirations and said the party would do its utmost to prevent any questions being asked that could trigger concern regarding Georgia’s foreign orientation or the country’s Euro-Atlantic integration.

Usupashvili said the separation of the Republican Party from the Georgian Dream coalition would be completed by time the October Parliamentary Elections are held. He stressed these would be fair and transparent and would compose the country’s future Parliament and Government. 

Parliament Speaker David Usupashvili said the ongoing process was part of democracy. Photo by Parliament webpage. 

Today’s meeting between Usupashvili and the Prime Minister Kvirikashvili also revealed the Georgian Dream-Democratic Georgia party will also participate in the elections independently, without the other parties that the Georgian Dream coalition was composed of.

The Georgian Dream coalition was composed of representatives from:

  • The Georgian Dream-Democratic Georgia party;
  •  The Republican Party of Georgia; 
  •  Our Georgia - Free Democrats;
  • The Conservative Party of Georgia;
  •  Industry Will Save Georgia political party;
  • The People’s Party of Georgia;
  • The National Forum political party:
  • and several other individuals. 

The People's Party quit the coalition in 2013, the Free Democrats did the same in 2014. 

Kvirikashvili stressed prior to the 2012 Parliamentary Elections, when the Georgian Dream coalition was created by ex-Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili, the situation was "very different” and the pre-election environment was full of challenges and uncertainty. The aim of establishing the Georgian Dream coalition was ultimately to gain enough support to dethrone United National Movement (UNM) from power. 

The elections process is transparent and democratic now therefore there is nothing special in the decision [for the Republicans to withdraw and run independently]. It is a normal process,” Kvirikashvili said. 
The Republican ministers will retain their posts in Government until the elections. No changes are planned in this regard,” Kvirikashvili said. He underscored no change jobs held by Republican ministers would be highly dependent on the future cooperation of parties. 

"The Government’s stability is of utmost importance. Despite the partial values we should work together before the elections,” Kvirikashvili said, adding it was difficult to speak about the post-election cooperation and relations between parties and only time would tell how this would pan out.