Democracy Rising

"Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable" ~ President John F. Kennedy

Friday, September 30, 2005

Georgia's Democracy Test

Well almost 2 years after the revolution that unseated Shevvie, Georgian voters return to the ballot box to elect MP's in five single-mandate constituencies tomorrow (October 1st). With President Saakashvili's commitment to democratic principles sliding all over the shop in the last 12 months, they will provide a key test for just how far Western principles have taken hold.

Its important to remember that opinion polls show a drop in support for the ruling National-Movement but no rise in the oppositions figures. Quite how well either side will do remains to be seen, but most analysts say the opposition can expect to achieve no better than 1 seat. International observers will be in attendance so an account of the fairness of the vote should be provided by next week. However some forces, from the opportunist opposition, are likely to knock all kinds of wild accusations about, regardless of their report. Unfortunately the government doesn't help its case by doing stuff like this and this. Whats most alarming about that last article is this statement by President Saakashvili:

“Some people [referring to opponents] say that we are doing this just for the elections. But we were working a year before the elections, three months before the elections, the day before the elections, we will work on the election day and we will continue to work after the elections as well, only if there will be your support

Now correct me if im wrong but isn't this the sort of thing that goes on in Singapore? The electorate told that if they vote opposition they will be last to receive state investment. Lets hope im just reading too much into that statement. Regardless of what happens i'll keep you updated, and if you want further reading The Messenger has its own low down on the elections.


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