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Constitution: 16 years of struggle against people2011-08-26 20:06
Georgia' fundamental law is 16 years old. Over this time it has undergone considerable changes. Following the Rose revolution that brought Mikheil Saakashvili, a US protégé, to power, the constitution became one of the tools for the Georgian leader's struggle against people of his country and opponents to his regime. The Caucasian republic was not afraid to accuse the Russian Federation of violating the Constitution and the law on Occupied Territories in particular.
After Georgia boycotted a referendum on accession to the union of sovereign republics and announced independence in 1991, it did not abandon the Soviet constitution for four years that followed. Naturally, the desire to erase the past was so great that the Caucasian republic was openly conflicting with Abkhazia and South Ossetia seeking annexation to the Russian Federation. Only in 1995, when Edward Shevardnadze became president, a new law intended to build Georgian statehood was adopted.
However, after the Rose Revolution when Mikheil Saakashvili declared himself people's representative, the constitution grew into an effective tool of struggle against compatriots. In contradiction to article 12 of the Constitution stipulating protection of property rights and formally guaranteed right of national minorities to develop culture and native languages, the real legislative basis that would pursue these constitutional norms is de-facto "scattered" about a number of different documents. Kurds, Armenians and Azerbaijanis have no space in Mikheil Nikolozovich's nationalistic state. They are forced to be religious associations and have a legal status.
In February 2004 the constitution saw new wonderful amendments allowing the president to appoint a PM and dissolve parliament. Saakashvili also became the country's commander-in-chief acquiring the right to appoint members of the National Security Council and Chiefs of the Armed Forces General Staff. The Georgian leader set up a bulky but strict hierarchy informally distributing authorities between three people controlling the country's key spheres: politics, economy and army. Using the fundamental law Vano Merabishvili and Kakha Baindurashvili created a police state with such an economic system that gave a false impression of a good business climate and robbed small and medium business to poverty making feckless officials only richer.
In June 2006 the parliament adopted a number of amendments to the law on elections affecting electoral campaigns allowing heads of local executive and legislative bodies to campaign in compliance with law. As a result the president and his supporters offered a dominating support to their candidates with the help of United National Movement party. Thus, it was hard to see whose money was spent since officials were helping their protégés during their working hours.
It's common knowledge that public funds were used to influence results of elections. Tbilisi municipal council issued vouchers signed by mayor Gigi Ugulava for the amount of GEL 100 to teachers and professors - allegedly as an addition to pay for gas, then in short supply. Right before the municipal election a series of programs - Tbilisi Stories - was shown on TV praising the government. Kind words had their high price - GEL 600 thousand.