Instead of focusing on local self-governance elections, the opposition should join forces to mount pressure on the authorities and achieve early presidential elections, Nino Burjanadze, ex-speak of parliamentary and leader of Democratic Movement-United Georgia (DMUG), said on October 8.
Speaking at Rustavi 2 TV's late-night political talk show, Position, Burjanadze said she disagreed with the Alliance for Georgia's decision to run in the local elections, which President Saakashvili has offered to hold on May 30, 2010.
The Alliance, which includes New Rights, Republican and Our Georgia-Free Democrats parties, said in late September that its leader Irakli Alasania would run for the Tbilisi mayoral office and nominated ex-public defender, Sozar Subari, for the chairmanship of Tbilisi City Council. The Alliance, however, said electoral environment should be at first changed and decided to join an inter-party working group on electoral reform.
"All the opposition politicians should put aside leadership ambitions unless Saakashvili is the President," Burjanadze said. "We should achieve early presidential elections."
"I do not agree with the way, which Alliance for Georgia has chosen," she continued. "There is no ground to speak and to trigger suspicions that Alliance for Georgia made a deal with the authorities and that they are playing the authorities' game; and for that reason I am absolutely sure that after some time the Alliance will see there is no reason for talks [with the authorities] and for running in [the local] elections and the Alliance will chose the way of pressure on the authorities through vigorous actions."
"Irakli Okruashvili [ex-defense minister, who was granted with asylum in France] reacted so promptly [and positively] to this call of establishing coalition of irreconcilable opposition parties, because he, like me, knows Saakashvili very well and because he has no illusion that Saakashvili will take any democratic step and create proper environment for holding of fair [local] elections," Burjanadze added.
On October 5 Burjanadze called on "all the opposition parties, irreconcilable to the current regime" to establish "democratic front" in order "to put an end" to the present authorities.
She said on October 8 that "all the legal means" should be used by the opposition to achieve this goal, including street protest rallies.
"Situation is now different from the one, which was in April [when the opposition launched street protest rallies]; then there still were some people having illusions about the war's start, but now less and less people have these illusions. Saakashvili had more support internationally in April, but today Saakashvili is actually in isolation," Burjanadze said.