Nika Melia, the chairman of the United National Movement party, denies the information disseminated by some media outlets that he is leaving the party, and that the fourth president of Georgia, Giorgi Margvelashvili, will be appointed chairman of the party in his place.
Melia answered questions from journalists at a briefing held today, and noted that the rumor was invented to cover the fact that Bidzina Ivanishvili is involved in an international scandal.
“Giorgi Margvelashvili will become the chairman of the National Movement and I will become the fourth President of the country,” he joked. “This question was written by the staff of the State Security Service and sent to Imedi TV, Rustavi 2, where many of my friends still work. This topic is not developed by any of the producers, it was written by the special services. You know what an international scandal Bidzina Ivanishvili and the Georgian Dream are involved in. It is really heartbreaking and it is not pleasant to watch a journalist, especially from Rustavi 2, voice a question from an employee of a department of the SSG,” Melia said.
An audio recording was spread on social media allegedly involving Bidzina Ivanishvili, the founder of the Georgian Dream, and Vladimir Yevtushenkov, Russian oligarch and founder of Sistemas.
The telephone conversation dated March 10 and March 12 this year concerns a meeting of Russian businessmen in Tbilisi. The recording mentions the name of Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili, about whom Ivanishvili allegedly told Yevtushenkov that he had met with his envoy. In response, Yevtushenkov allegedly asks Ivanishvili to personally meet with his representative.