PIK's missing millions25.10.2012 | 18:45
Passion around the TV PIK does not cease. Why the only Russian-language channel in Georgia was closed? Some say that after the victory of the "Georgian Dream" the PIK was removed as a superfluous "propaganda mouthpiece of Saakashvili". But in the lobby of the channel they are talking about ther things. They are discussing a pretty penny stolen by the channel CEO. Producer of the channel Giuli Chachanashvili has told us about this and many other things.
- Mrs. Chachanashvili, please describe the general environment in the TV PIK to date.
- This channel is surrounded by interesting things. The PIK seemed to exist independently, but still was subordinate to the first public channel of the Georgian television. And its CEO Giorgi Chanturia for a very long time thought that the money spent for the channel was a burden to him. And a few days ago there was a rumor that Chanturia had finally decided to close the channel. Naturally, all of our team decided to learn everything from the source. And the source - this is our CEO Aleko Parulava. However, he has decided not to contact us.
Despite our expectation last week Parulava did not meet us. He had no answer but we were waiting for it. In the end he came to us and said everyone was dismissed. It has turned out, and I was really shocked, that our CEO Aleko Parulava has personally asked Chanturia to close the channel PIK and continue negotiations. I'm 80% sure that both CEOs are playing one game. The fact is that under the contract with the first public channel our channel has received 2 million lari and created almost all material built up in the contract. And the channel was to run until late December. 2,000,000 GEL, allocated for this, have disappeared into nowhere.
- And you, of course, are wondering where the money is gone.
- We demand to carry out a check of the first public channel. Let them check our channel too. We wanna know the fate of the money, allegedly spent for the channel. And if the auditor detects violations ... And I'm sure it will ... Especially given the fact that the public television has closed all the talk-shows on the pretext that they had had no money. We demand the return of the money in the budget if it is not spent for the PIK.
- Who and why, in your opinion, wants to close the channel PIK?
- We have a few suggestions. The first is that Chanturia has embezzled these 2 million. The second is that he is going to leave and take all the money following the example of other members of the government. But a third option - to cause as much inconvenience to the new government as he can.
- As far as I know, the PIK started broadcasting in a very complex and ambiguous time when the appearance of a Russian-speaking channel was not expected.
- It was in 2008, after the August war. That time everything from Russia was perceived hostile, and even those who knew the Russian did not admit it. But now, when the situation seemed to be changing for the better, the channel is closed, which is very strange. I see no political speculation here, since the new government is not still in power. I know everyone says that the PIK - this is Saakashvili's channel. Of course, it's silly to claim that they did not take part in the creation of this channel. In post-war Georgia everyone saw a dilemma whether we needed a Russian-language channel for the whole former Soviet Union, the Caucasus.
- How do you assess the future of the PIK?
- I can't say I'm optimistic. Now the moment does not really suit the solution of our problem. The parliament and the Cabinet have just been formed. Judging by the forces opposing each other, life would be not easy. All of this has transferred our issue into the secondary plane. But we're not going to stop. During the rally in Kutaisi we are going require paying attention to this issue, to start a check, to punish those guilty. We had diplomatic meetings with the representatives of the U.S. Embassy, the UK; many missions have responded to the fact of closing the channel. Tomorrow our fate will be determined. You know, our world is full of miracles, I fully admit that suddenly they may decide that the channel must be back. This is a fantasy, but why we should not dream?