A place where the government is always the winner
Author: By Archil Sikharulidze
The political surveys conducted in Georgia by the International Republican Institute (IRI) and the National Democratic Institute (NDI) seems to be areas where the government never loses. Within the segment of the population that is critical to the Saakashvili regime, this has raised several questions and concerns.
On March 27, NDI issued a survey that revealed the ratings of Georgia’s political parties. According to the survey, The National Movement with 47% is the leader in the forthcoming parliamentary elections. Approximately a month later, IRI released its latest survey. The survey again emphasized the leadership of the ruling party (45%) and its leader Mikhail Saakashvili (77%).
While the government commended the professionalism of the NDI and IRI surveys, the opposition parties (excluding the Christian-Democratic Movement), refused to recognize the survey results. Their basis for not trusting these two American organizations is based on the fact that since Mikhail Saakashvili and The National Movement came to power in 2004, the ruling party has been the number one political force in Georgia, despite the frequent occurrence of human rights violations that include cases of torture in detention facilities, and the forceful dispersal of various opposition demonstrations.