Political leaders are committed to representing their constituents. They can work together. I think, when they reach an agreement, when they find the courage to finally reach an agreement, they will effectively work within the parliament, the US Ambassador to Georgia Kelly Degnan declared in the TV Program Kviris Interview (Interview of the Week) on the Georgian Public Broadcaster.
Kelly Degnan stressed that all of the elements of an agreement are going to be up to the parties to decide. These are very important issues that they are taking seriously as they should, she added.
“I think what is important is two things. One, these polls come out and provide very important information for the public, for the media, but also for the party leaders. This is how they can learn what are the citizens’ priorities. I think there was some very good information in the recent polls that show that what Georgians are really focused on it and really care about are the economy and jobs and public health and education and high prices. These are the issues that Georgia’s political leaders need to be focused on. There are big challenges facing this country, and I think these polls are further indication that that’s what the public wants their elected leaders to be working on. I think that poll also showed that 70 per cent of the people polled support having their elected leaders work together. That’s very important. And from what I’ve seen over these past five months, these political leaders are committed to representing their constituents. They can work together. I think, when they reach an agreement, when they find the courage to finally reach an agreement, they will effectively work within the parliament. That, I hope, will result in important reforms. You mentioned the importance and distrust of institutions. I think we have seen this in connection with elections as well as high-profile cases. If there is more confidence in the election results, in court decisions, the public needs that trust, they need to know that these are independent institutions and they are acting without political pressure or interference,” Kelly Degnan said.
The Ambassador added that information that one side or the other wants to hear is usually cited from the international observer reports.
“ I think that’s why we see very high percentages of polling respondents who don’t know or are confused. It’s not helpful to only hear what you want to hear. These reports and these polls are provided to help, not to criticise, but provide the information that Georgia’s leaders need to improve Georgia’s systems. And the reports are very carefully written to be both constructive but also informative. And when one side or the other only takes what they want to hear and doesn’t report in a balanced way or here in a balanced way, the feedback that’s being provided, that is a missed opportunity and obviously creates confusion in the public discourse,” Kelly Degnan concluded.