20 May 2024,   06:18
Parliamentary discussion once again confirmed that the opponents have no argument against the draft law, the law is precisely European - Prime Minister

Parliamentary discussion once again confirmed that the opponents have no argument against the draft law, the law is precisely European. Such a statement made today the Prime Minister of Georgia at a briefing in the Government Administration.

“I want to respond to the first reading of the draft law “On Transparency of Foreign Influence” by the Parliament. The parliamentary review confirmed once again that the opponents of the draft law have no argument against the draft law.

In fact, the law is precisely European because it is based on one of the main European values, namely transparency and accountability. Also, together with the European one, this draft law is Georgian, based on the fact that it protects the main principle of our statehood, which is the national sovereignty of Georgia.

As you know, the draft law envisages the only thing, which is the annual declaration of the money received and spent by the organizations carrying out the interests of the foreign power. This is the minimum standard of transparency. There is a much stricter standard of transparency than this in the US. Also, the European Commission has approved a draft law with much stricter standards, and many EU member states have laws with much stricter standards.

They lied last year and this year as well, that, as if everything was already transparent, as if the state agencies were already provided with all the information regarding NGOs, which the parliamentary debates proved to be an absolute lie.

In fact, we extracted data from 7 organizations, including the wealthiest, and found that at most 18% of these organizations’ finances were not transparent, but accessible to state agencies. As for publicity, 0% of these funds are public.

Also, a large number of NGOs generally refrain from disclosing their finances. A simple question to ask is, when you receive and spend money, why wouldn’t you want to show that money to the public? You get money, you spend money, why do you hide it from the public? Why don’t you want all this to be transparent to the public, if you are sure of your own integrity?! There is simply no answer to this question. If you are honest, get money, spend, why don’t you want to show it to people?

Transparency cannot be directed against anyone, moreover, transparency cannot distinguish between enemies and friends. It applies equally to all, enemy and friend, honest and dishonest subject.

The fact that the Government of Georgia, for example, is fully transparent to the public, we publish all government decrees, this does not mean that we consider ourselves as someone’s enemy, transparency is precisely accountability to the public, it is, first of all, the responsibility of a friend”, - said Irakli Kobakhidze.