Speculation of UNM Disunity as Four Opposition MPs Resign

Four opposition MPs have left their official positions according to InterPressNews which reported that Zurab Japaridze, the Executive Chairman of the UNM along with Goga Khachidze, Giorgi Meladze and Pavle Kublashvili had all vacated their positions.

“The manner and timing of leaving the party has made many people upset, but we chose neither. Rumors were spread about us allegedly being against leaving. We are very sorry for not having a chance to inform those dear to us in advance,” said Japaridze.

“Apparently, the former members of the National Movement see a real threat of openly pro-Russian forces coming to power because of the forthcoming parliamentary elections. The National Movement has passed two significant tests by peacefully handing over the government to the political force that won the elections and managed to survive as a political force,” the statement reads.

“It is important for a political force to survive, but a political movement needs to be absolutely renewed for victory and gaining people’s confidence again. The practice of taking responsibility for failure and renewal of political movements has been established in democratic countries. UNM has failed in the third test, disappointing many of the country’s citizens,” the statement continued. 

Apparently, the MPs’ motivation to depart was not related to expectations of receiving a parliamentary mandate in the 2016 elections. “Moreover, none of my colleagues, who have departed from the UNM plan to fight for the mandate, as they believe our society wants novelties,” added Japaridze. 

“We plan to fight for the European, democratic future of united Georgia, to get rid of the oligarch, who grinds the economic system to a halt, facilitates poverty and collapsed state institutions. We understand the people’s worry about economic problems and plan to create a new political center, attracting professionals to engage in the political process,” continues the statement.

“The UNM is dissolving,” said PM Gharibashvili, in response to the opposition developments. “It is surprising that the party has not fallen apart completely yet. They are trying to masquerade as if they were a team again, but the party is dissolving as three more teams emerge from within it,” Gharibashvili stated.

The departed members of UNM have been said to be moving to Iveria, a social movement which is mainly composed of experienced technocrats from the previous government. Gregory Vashadze, one of the founders of Iveria commented that no political or other sort of official communication has been held between Iveria and the four MP’s. “I do not rule out cooperation with all the western forces in the country,” said Vashadze, the ex-Foreign Minister of Georgia. More information about the intentions of the MPs is expected to be known in the near future.

28 May 2015 22:56