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Letter Sent to the President is Returned

23.03.2011

Maka Malakmadze, Adjara

The website of the President of Georgia – www.president.gove.ge – has a service entitled Letter to the President. This service provides users the opportunity to electronically send an e-mail to the President. However, the e-mail does not reach the addressee and it comes back with the warning – “the indicated electronic address has a problem of receiving”.

Galina Oganesian is disabled and lives below the poverty line. She sent an e-mail to the President, but it was returned to her with the error message described above.

Galina Oganesian: “I have a problem regarding my land ownership. The Khelvachauri Land Recognition Commission has abolished the land ownership certification issued to me earlier. It did so to serve the interests of another citizen. I could not achieve justice in any court instance. My opponent, Givi Surmanidze, even mocked me by saying that an Armenian could not win in Georgia and as it turns out he was right. I decided to write  to the Georgian President regarding this matter. However, sending a letter by post in Georgia costs 2.50 GEL. Some might think that 2.50 GEL is a small price to pay, but for someone like me, it is considered expensive. So, on March 7th and with the help of my friends, I sent  two e-mails to the president, only to have them returned to me. I could not think that the President’s site lied as well.”

Human Rights Center also tried to send Oganasiani’s letter to the president’s e-mail address indicated on his website: info@president.gove.ge but was unsuccessful.

AThe website states “the applications can be addressed to the entrance of citizen’s letters of President Administration (#1 Abdushelishvili St. Tbilisi) during 10:00 – 18:00 p.m. Phone: 28 27 36.” We contacted them. After long waiting, the operator responded: “Generally, we do not have these problems. But I can check with the IT people who handle technical issues.” She stated that they normally receive the e-mails.

On our question whether they had received Galina Oganesiani’s e-mail, she stated that they have not.

However, we had sent Oganesiani’s letter to the president and it was returned.

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