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Georgia is a big jet with a dead engine24.03.2009 | 14:00
"Now Georgia, our country, looks like a big jet with a dead engine. We are seated inside, the citizens - its healthy and unhealthy part. And the jet's owner is Mikheil Saakashvili. And in this seemingly hopeless situation all depends on solidarity and unity of the people, i.e.passengers", - this vivid comparison was presented by Levan Gachechiladze, one of the leaders of the United Georgian opposition.
Ex presidential candidate from the united opposition was a guest of "Political Week" show broadcast on Sundays on Georgian Public Broadcasting First Channel.
According to Gachechiladze if all Georgian people are united and uncompromising the country will be saved.
"Then the jet will level off and land safely. The jet and the passengers - i.e. our country - will be saved," - he explained adding that otherwise the jet wreck is inevitable.
Like the rest of the opposition Levan Gachechiladze is sure that following the start of April 9 oppositional rally Saakashvili will doubtless step down.
"He will withdraw as the country needs it. The resources of this government are exhausted. All we have achieved for 20 years of the country's independence was brought to nought or into challenge by the authorities. These are things like sovereignty, integrity and our country's role as a transport corridor, independence of the banking system, economic ties, Georgia's membership in the EU, Council of Europe and other international organizations", - Gachechiladze specified.
According to him Saakashvili's government is not governing the country anymore and it was especially evident during the August war when the lack of coordination and command in the Georgian army and within authorities led to hundreds of military and civilian deaths.
The oppositionist believes the current government is not governing the country but is pursuing intense propaganda not only against Russia but against the opposition too. It is aimed at preservation of Saakashvili's position. According to him the authorities were propagandizing last August too.
"On August 8 and 9 top officials including Saakashvili were convincing us that the Georgian army kept Tskhinval under control while people were dying there. This is propaganda and the real lack of governance, lack of consolidation and a chaos", - Gachechiladze said.
According to him now the propaganda of the government is aimed at intimidation of people so that as few people went out into the streets on April 9 as possible. The interpretation of Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov's statement presented by Georgian propaganda TV channels and authorities pursues the same objective, Gachechiladze believes.
"But Georgian people will definitely go out on the streets without asking Saakashvili, Mat Bryza or Sergey Lavrov. They will be there because Saakashvili is no more capable of ruling the country", - Levan Gachachiladze stated.
He did not reveal the opposition's action plan but promised that the society would be informed on the plan ten days before April 9. At the same time the oppositionist emphasized there would be no violence on the part of rally initiators and participants. As for the methods of struggle one of them is picketing governmental institutions and offices of TV channels.
"I would like to assure everyone that this time no one will go home until Saakashvili resigns. He raised the bar too high and now he must withdraw from this position", - Gachechiladze remarked.
Answering the question of the show hostess what will come next and who will call and hold elections if Saakashvili really steps down, Levan Gachechiladze stated the current chairman of parliament was out of question.
"In case Saakashvili resigns, Dato Bakradze and Vano Merabishvili (Interior Ministry) will accompany him. They will not be in charge of elections. As for calling the elections there are many vice speakers in the parliament who are able to do that. I don't want to be specific about anything but by way of example even Gigi Tsereteli could do it", - Gachechiladze hinted.