Program for the Support of Village Does Not Recognize Equality Mark
Maka Malakmadze, Batumi
Why Should We Need Bus Stop Worth of 3 100 or 3 500 GEL When We Do not Have Road
Phrase: Residents of Adjara Autonomous Republic are dissatisfied with the State Program for the Support of Village and they started demonstrations in front of the government building
Residents of Adjara Autonomous Republic are dissatisfied with the State Program for the Support of Village and they started demonstrations in front of the government building. “We are not going to keep silence any more. Why they do not do in our village what local residents need?” complained residents of the village of Achkvistavi.
How the priorities of the villages were clarified and what local residents really need; what funds were allocated for the program implementation and how the activities were shared – the Human Rights Center visited two districts of Adjara to get answers to these questions.
The Program for the Support of Village was launched based on the resolution N 35 of the Government of Georgia issued on January 20, 2009. 19 998 876 GEL was allocated for the program implementation. Officially, the program aims to develop the infrastructure of the village though village population complains nobody ever asked them what they need.
“They have made bus stop in the village but we had problems about drinking water. We have to fetch water from the distance of several hundreds of meters. Or, they could repair the road. Why should we need a bus stop that cost 3 100 or 3 500 GEL when we do not have road?” asked Rusiko Dzneladze, a resident of the village Chkhutuneti.
“They have not paved the road completely. They have only filled the holes and they claim the road was repaired. What is filling up of holes in their dictionary then? Where have they spent money? They should ask us what we needed and we could tell them. For example, everybody needs kindergarten. But nobody has ever inquired what local residents really needed,” said Asmat Beridze, a resident of the village of Salibauri.
There are 78 villages in this district. Three of them were not included in the program. 681 018 GEL was allocated in the Khelvachauri district within the program. The municipality board hired 10 companies to carry out the entire work in 75 villages.
Repair works for the road and water-system was also mentioned in the list of scheduled activities; however, similar works shall be done within the Gasification Program. It is strange why the funds of the Program for the Support of Village were spent on the gasification problem because the president of Georgia had already promised locals to supply the villages with gas. District governor Teimuraz Dumbadze explained: “The local people requested to purchase pipes.”
Dumbadze also claims he often checked the ongoing work. “I gave remarks to several companies. They failed to employee proper worker. One of similar companies was Babuti XXI which did the work for the second time because of poor quality.” Tamaz Japaridze, director of the company “Babuti XXI” denied the accusations in his interview with the Human Rights Center.
The criteria of selecting the companies are also very interesting. Teimuraz Dumbadze tries to convince us once more that they had selected the companies based on their experience. However, our survey proves the opposite.
The Human Rights Center requested public information about the registration of five out of ten companies from the Batumi Tax Inspection. The provided information demonstrated that Company “Babuti XXI” was registered on April 11, 2008; “G.I.E. Ltd” was registered on February 18, 2009 that was one month after the government of Georgia announced the competition for program implementation.
By the way, several companies had purchased the equipment and other tools before the municipality board approved the program. For example, “Bakuri Factory for Construction Materials Ltd” purchased the equipment and tools 8 days before the program was approved on April 2 2009; the Khelvachauri municipality board approved the program on April 10.
Besides that, several companies started activities before they signed the agreement with Khelvachauri municipality board. For example, “Ilia Ltd” started the activities on April 13 and the agreement was signed on April 16. The same happened in the case of Babuti XXI Ltd.
Program Funds > on Agreement Funds
The funds allocated for the implementation of the Program for the Support of Village does not coincide with the funds indicated in the agreements with companies.
More precisely, according to the agreements Babuti XXI Ltd received 71 504 GEL while according to the program the Babuti XXI had to receive 134 758 GEL.
G.I.E Ltd received 79 112 GEL according to the agreement but according to the program they had to get double sum – 152 470 GEL.
However, “Reconstruction-Construction District Ltd” received more money according to the agreement (104 123 GEL) though the program envisaged only 85 690 GEL.
When the Human Rights Center asked Dumbadze to explain the misunderstanding in the funding he sent us to Zurab Sharabidze, head of Construction and Public Services and Amenities.
“The allocated funds do not mean that it is the estimated sum for particular entity. It is impossible that only half of allocated sum was mentioned in the agreement. The difference shall be a profit for the company…If you were more educated in this field, you could understand more.”
Unlike Khelvachauri district the State Program for the Support of Village started a bit later. Vasil Tavartkiladze, district governor, explained the fact very simply. “We started it in due time.”
According to the information provided by the press-center of the Kobuleti district administration there are 48 villages in the district. The district administration applied to the program for 41 villages but municipality board approved only 36 villages out of them.
The municipality board approved a bit smaller sum for the program implementation than it was allocated… According to the district administration 534 830 GEL was allocated for the purpose but the municipality board approved only 524 830 GEL.
Within the Program nine companies were selected to implement the activities. They were selected as a result of the negotiations with one person. District governor Vasil Tavartkiladze stated they used this form of selecting the companies based on the resolution of the prime-minister. We inquired why they had chosen those companies, he replied us in question. “Are you carrying out investigation?”
We could not find the registration numbers of the selected companies in the materials provided by the municipality of the Kobuleti district to the Human Rights Center. Governor Vasil Tavartkiladze said it was a technical error. According to him, the agreement was signed with all companies.
Basically, reconstruction of village centers and former clubs, old bus stops and constructing of new ones include the work implementations. According to Vasil Tavartkiladze, the meetings were held in each village. They invited people from different districts who spoke on behalf of the entire community. After these meetings the activities were scheduled.
The Human Rights Center talked to some villagers in the region. We were not informed about any meeting. We even did not know what was happening. We even did not know if money was allocated on our village. If they had asked us, we would have requested to resolve water problem”, stated the villagers of the village of Alambari.
We talked to the governor of the village of Tsikhisdziri about the main problem, water-supply. We told him the villagers complain about water-supply. The governor of the municipality told us he did not know anything about it. Then he said he would not answer any question because we had to send questions by ordinary mail and only afterwards he could answer our questions.
Agreement Funds < on Program Funds
According to the “Program for the Support of Village”, approved by the Municipality Board the allocated money does not coincide with money of signed agreement.
Agreement of the individual entrepreneur Jumber Jincharadze was signed for 80 044 GEL while the price of the implemented work is 157 481 GEL.
Agreement of the individual entrepreneur Mamia Tsetskhladze was signed for 42 248 GEL while the price of the implemented work is 51 083 GEL.
According to the program, 115 633 GEL was allocated for the individual entrepreneur Irakli Katamadze while the agreement was signed with him for 66 311 GEL.
The agreement of the individual entrepreneur Merab Bolkvadze was signed for 69 857 GEL while according to the program he has to do work for 105 917 GEL.
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