Leaders and members of the non-parliamentary Free Georgia opposition party may face criminal charges as the State Audit Office is looking into the party’s cheap medicine campaign which offers medicines bought by the party in Turkey to Georgian citizens at a lower price than they cost at Georgian pharmacies.
The State Audit Office sees this as a “sign of bribery of voters and money laundering.”
The party leader Kakha Kukava has already been summoned to answer questions and had to spend three hours in the audit office’s headquarters in Tbilisi.
Kukava says that no illegality is taking place as the party sells the medicines [not gifts] at the price they cost in Turkey.
Our financial interest is zero. The goal of the campaign is to help people and to show that there is a monopoly on the Georgian pharmacological market, with pharmacological firms like PSP, Aversi, Pharmadepo and GPC selling low quality medicines at a very high price [compared to our neighboring countries],” Kukava said.
Kukava says that the state government “has not shown any interest in the cartel deal between the top pharmacological firms in Georgia over the past seven years, while the state agencies immediately showed interest to our campaign.”
The party started the campaign at the end of September 2019.
The party members bought 20 different, widely used medicines in Turkey and brought them to their Tbilisi office.
People are able to buy the medicines via the party’s electronic pharmacy shop.
One of the medicines which costs 21 GEL in Georgian pharmacies is available for 5.11 GEL in the electronic pharmacy.