The President of Georgia addressed the population in Kutaisi

Welcome everyone.

The President, Ministers, millionaires and any one of you are all equal from now on.

Everyone, who will need treatment will get similar hospital rooms, similar clinics, and will receive the same medical service and it will be equally accessible for everyone.

This is the difference between what it was like before and what we all are creating together.

We have seized the political authority from the people residing on the same street, who neither love Kutaisi, nor Zugdidi, nor those from Sagarejo, from Gldani, from Varketili, nor their neighbors, nor their schoolmates and who have looked down at their own people throughout their life.

These people lived on one street – on the street where the Parliament was, close to where the university and hospital were, and everything was concentrated in their hands.

By moving the Parliament to Kutaisi, we have seized the political authority from a handful of people. These very people fought during the civil war too and everything was decided among them, yet this brought disaster to the whole country.

This should never return to Georgia.

Our opponents are demanding today for the Parliament’s building to remain in Tbilisi.

I know that no one in Kutaisi lives the way this parliament is built.

I know that the water supply has improved in Kutaisi, but in most places it is still rationed and in some areas it might not even run for the whole day.

I know very well that by restoring the facades of the building, not all of your problems, including daily ones will be solved.

One thing is clear; we need to begin everything from somewhere.

I visited Anaklia today. When we were building Anaklia, everyone laughed at us in the beginning. Today, there are hotels being built around the new bridge, the construction of which many criticized us. There are football stadiums and bases being built by private investments.

There is also an aqua-park being built and a few restaurants have already been built.

All of this is to serve people.

I remember what it was like here. Frightened people did not dare to go outside. We provided them with security and police and people have found relief.

There are opportunities emerging now, new hotels have been built and other objects are being constructed.

200,000 tourists will visit that place now.

You know that we are building a huge airport in Kutaisi and I suppose that a half million tourists will go through that airport next year.

This means that a half million will travel through Kutaisi.

This means that these half million people will go through Kutaisi, spend money there, and go to the cafés and stay in hotels.

Who would have needed hotels and café-restaurants in Kutaisi before?! People had no means of living.,,

Other opportunities have emerged gradually. Nothing happens instantly, we need to start moving, as there has to be a center everywhere in Georgia.

In Tbilisi there has never been built as much built as what is being built today.

I, as a resident of Tbilisi, have never been so proud of the fact that I was born, raised and intend to live in Tbilisi for the rest of my life.

I want every resident of Kutaisi to be proud to live here and not to want to leave here.

People of Kutaisi have an incredible dignity. You are incredibly proud people.

Now, we actually do have a reason to be proud.

Everything is being created with our own hands, our own work – there are residents of Kutaisi employed at the construction of the airport.

We will put the whole of Tskaltubo under-construction in August. Several hundred million are being spent so that 500-600 thousand tourists will visit Tskaltubo in 3-4 years.

Of course, to begin all this was very difficult – first, we had to settle out refugees and provide them with apartments. These people deserved our help the most, as they were the ones who were in the greatest poverty. We had to supply that place with water, we are building a road and are already bringing investors too.

Sairme is being restored; the autobahn from Tbilisi will reach Kutaisi next year. A fast train will also connect Tbilisi to Kutaisi next year and it will be possible to get from the capital to here in an hour and 40 minutes.

This is the geographical center of the country, and from now on one of the important political centers as well. I am sure that Tbilisi will only gain from this.

People should live near their homes and close to their roots.

It isn’t necessary for people from villages to move to the cities – there are factories, companies, and tourist attractions being created in Kutaisi and people will come here for work. For instance, they will come from Sviri and other adjacent villages especially since we are already building good roads in the villages.

People will be close to their homes and roots, and stay in their own environment in the end.

This is about infrastructure and each change which is taking place here serves this purpose.

The cave of Prometheus is nearby as well and it is said that Prometheus stole fire from Gods and gave it to people. Like him, we have stolen healthcare from an elite group and given it back to people together with these doctors, who were in a much worse situation before.

Thus, I would like to greatly thank you for doing such an enormous thing; for confiding in us and listening to us; for your work as well.

Together we will overcome all of the difficulties.

I know that the biggest problem here is unemployment, but for people to live well, they need to have  basic social conditions.

The children should go to nice, heated schools and there have to be at least essential opportunities available.

Kutaisi, which is a city of tremendously great tradition, was being ruined during the previous years in terms of infrastructure and it had reached the condition of the least developed, inurbane city.

There was no water, road, electricity, or social sturctures here and despite this, there are incredible people living here – they even went to the icy cold theaters (which we have already restored) and the hall had been full before every single premier.

There were premiers held in the Opera Theater as well, which did not even have walls (and we have actually built a new one).

There were no basic conditions at the university and they still studied here.

They studied because it is the tradition of this city, the largest cultural heart of Georgia is here.

I am personally a fourth generation resident of Tbilisi, but I am proud that my grandmother and grandfather were from here.

The whole intelligentsia, which created the new Georgian culture in the twentieth century, came from Kutaisi.

We are now returning to Kutaisi what had rightly belonged to it in all epochs.

With this, not only is the role of Tbilisi not diminished but it is increased – Georgia and respectively Tbilisi, becomes the center of the region.

Of course we are enhancing the significance of the region today. It is an amazing achievement for Imereti.

All of the districts of Imeteri depended on Tbilisi before, as those from Sachkhere, Chiatura, Zestafoni, Baghdati and Vani would go to the capital to find employment.

There were no opportunities for employment even in Kutaisi.

Now, jobs will be created primarily in Kutaisi, and this success will soon spread to other districts – Tskaltubo, Sairme, etc.

I saw in Tbilisi during the flood in what kind of conditions people from these regions live, who live in the capital in barracks, garages and in the gorges behind these garages. Even the police could not discover them there.

We should finish this and in order for us not to lose people in such conditions; we should build and develop everything around here.

This, what we see today, is the beginning of the beginning.

You can have trust in me as I have not broken a single promise or a single word which I have given to you and I will surely keep this word too.

My friends, my dear ones, our train has stopped here today, but it keeps on going.

It is a fast train, which will similarly take us towards Tbilisi, towards the sea, towards Europe too, as we are now joining the European Railway. What’s most important, our life will move forward towards peace.

My dear ones, none of the anti-reformist force will stop our progress.

The thing that irritated these people the most is this equality; the Parliament in Kutaisi irritates them as it is a symbol of equality; our glass-transparent constructions irritate them and the fact that people understand all of it irritates them the most.

People have gotten the taste of progress, people have gotten the taste of moving forward and no one can take these people back by any mechanism – neither with lies, nor with bribes and intimidation.

This is the main thing that has changed in this period.

That is why I would like to once again congratulate you, congratulate myself with this day.

I could not even imagine that we would manage to open such clinics everywhere without borrowing money, that the private sector would invest money, that we would build them and then insure you. I could not have even dreamed this.

That is why today is the day that dreams came true for me and you, the day of our completed promises and achieved goals, but I would like to tell you that it is a very small part of our goals.

My main goal is for people not to be poor, jobless, prospect-less or hopeless in Georgia and we will all do this together. 

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