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Violator Police Officer Promoted to the Position of Advisor to the Chair of the Government

31.05.2012
Former head of Adjara Patrol Police Department Joni Bakuridze, who was fired for having insulted journalist Teona Turmanidze from the TV-Company TV-25, was promoted to the position of the advisor to the Head of Adjara Government and government’s representative to Ukraine, Belarus and Moldova in the field of investments and tourism.

“I think Bakuridze was appointed to those high positions because of his friendship with Varshalomidze [head of Adjara government]. I have noticed them together during many events,” journalist Teona Turmanidze said.

Representative of the public relation service of the Adjara Government Eka Davitadze confirmed the information about Joni Bakuridze’s appointment to new position.

During Aslan Abashidze’s authority Bakuridze was Abashidze’s body guard. After the revolution, he was head of Patrol Police Department during many years. On February 16, 2012 he was fired from the position; the MIA reported about the issues as follows: “Officers of General Inspection of the Ministry of Internal Affairs have studied details of conflict that took place between Joni Bakuradze, head of Batumi Patrol Police and TV Company TV-25 journalist on February 16, 2012 in Batumi. On the basis of materials of general Inspection it was concluded that Joni Bakuradze committed an inappropriate behavior and therefore, he was dismissed from the position. The Ministry of Internal Affairs would like to apologize to the journalist of TV-25 for the above mentioned fact and reiterates its respect towards their activities.”

It is noteworthy that it was the only case when a police officer was punished for the interference in the journalist’s professional activities.

The incident occurred on February 16 when film-crew of the TV25’s news program “Matsne” was covering selective fining of drivers by patrol police officers at the cross-road of Rustaveli and Gamsakhurdia streets. Head of Patrol Police Department Joni Bakuridze hindered professional activities of the journalist Turmanidze, seized camera and insulted her. Later, the police returned the camera to the TV25.

Maka Malakmadze, tspress.ge

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