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How "Georgian Dream" salvaged the Dmanisi city assembly by violence

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Tuesday, 14 December 2021 16:36 hits 1101 times
After the election of Ramiz Ramazanov
After the election of Ramiz Ramazanov

Ramiz Ramazanov, a former member of "UNM," became the deputy chairperson of the Dmanisi city assembly. His fellow party members were looking for him for two days; State Security Service and police forces patrolled at his house. If he missed the city assembly meeting, extraordinary elections should be held.

Dmanisi city hall has 30 members. 15 mandates are owned by "Georgian Dream," 13 by "UNM," 1 by "Progress and Freedom," and 1 by an independent member.

The meeting on December 3 was disrupted because only 15 members appeared. In addition, "Georgian Dream" refused the offer from the opposition to appoint a "UNM" member as the chairperson.

Levan Moseshvili, a member of "UNM," stated about the disappearance of Ramazanov on December 8.

"We could not contact him for a couple of days. After that, some people would trail him on his way to school. The last time I met Ramazanov was December 8 in the schoolyard.

He told me that he was taken to the governor’s administration building against his will. He met with the governor and members of "Georgian Dream" who threatened him, saying even Bidzina Ivanishvili knew of his case.

A car from State Security Service was waiting outside the schoolyard when I met Ramazanov. Strangers came to us, took him, and left. We know nothing about him," - said Moseshvili.

Another deputy from the opposition, Husein Huseinov, stated that Ramazanov was given two choices: vote for the "Georgian Dream" candidate or commit suicide.

Police forces were mobilized near the Ramazanov house on December 9-10. His family members did not know his whereabouts but could contact him

The Ministry of Internal Affairs does not explain who police forces were protecting at the house or why they started patrolling after disappearing was made known.

Ramazanov was the director of Oruzmani public school. Two weeks ago, after The Inspection Service of the Ministry of Education, Science, Culture, and Sport of Georgia examined the school again, Ramazanov left the position.

The first audit was performed before the election, but they could not win him over. After the second examination, they threatened him with arrest but never explained what his crime was," – says Levan Moseshvili.

Ramazanov spoke with the media after reappearing and stated he was planning to attend the meeting on December 10. After being asked why he skipped the meeting a week prior, he answered:

"It was the right thing to do. I have reconsidered."

Sixteen members, Ramazanov among them, attended the city assembly meeting on December 10. He stated he left “UNM" and later was selected as a deputy chairman.

"There was no pressure. Dmanisi was in political turmoil; we should find a way out. I decided this was the right thing to do," – said Ramazanov. He was a member of the Dmanisi city assembly in the previous election from "Georgian Dream."

Nugzar Putkaradze, a newly-selected member of the Batumi city assembly, died after days of psychological pressure. "UNM" stated that he was offered 100000 GEL to leave the party and become an independent deputy. This scheme was devised by Davit Rizhvadze, father of Tornike Rizhvadze, Chairman of the Government of Ajara. On November 24, "UNM" shared audio recordings, done by Putkaradze himself, depicting the attempts to bribe him. The opposition held the majority in the city assembly before Nugzar Putkaradze. The Ministry of Internal Affairs started the investigation of negligent homicide, but there are no possible suspects yet.

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