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On air on Rustavi 2, the former mayoral candidate of the United National Movement, Nika Melia, talked about the situation at Tbilisi City Hall. According to his statement, not even a single infrastructural project has been implemented in Tbilisi in eight months nor has even a single pothole been filled.

FactCheck

took interest in Nika Melia’s statement and verified its accuracy.

We requested information about infrastructural projects with an individual cost of more than GEL 50,000 implemented from January 2014 to date from Tbilisi City Hall. We also requested the list of infrastructural projects which were planned but have not been finished or started.

According to the public information received from Tbilisi City Hall, a total of 256 projects with an individual cost of over GEL 50,000 and an overall cost of GEL 83 million have been implemented in Tbilisi since January 2014. Construction and rehabilitation work mainly concerned inner yards and roads, parks, outdoor lighting and residential houses. It should be noted that the largest part of the money, about GEL 32 million, was spent upon the rehabilitation of inner roads in Tbilisi. The rehabilitation of the roads still remains amongst the most important problems in the capital. According to the public information provided by Tbilisi City Hall, mainly inner roads were rehabilitated in the first eight months of 2014 whilst work on main roads has been planned for the 2015 budget.

A total of GEL 43 million has been allocated for the rehabilitation of roads in Tbilisi. Currently, tenders have been announced only for a certain number of projects. The Tbilisi city budget also includes the rehabilitation of a railway viaduct near the Zahesi settlement. The estimated cost of the project amounts to GEL 4,462 thousand. The Tbilisi City Hall budget also includes the rehabilitation and installation of outdoor lighting and architectural decorative lighting. A total of GEL 34 million is allocated for this purpose whilst about GEL 3.5 million has been assigned for the maintenance of drainage systems. Additionally, about GEL 48 million has been allocated for street sweeping and cleaning and delivering solid and larger-sized waste to landfills. About GEL 13 million has been allocated for installing the sewage system for the Olympic Village in Tbilisi.

It should be noted that construction work on the majority of these aforementioned projects has not started yet. Tenders, however, have already been announced. The construction and rehabilitation of the majority of the infrastructural projects is planned to start in 2015; however, the length of the work is in certain cases from three to four years. For additional comments we tried to contact Nika Melia a number of times but to no avail.

Conclusion

According to the information from Tbilisi City Hall, a total of 256 construction and rehabilitation projects with an individual cost of over GEL 50,000 have been implemented in Tbilisi in the past eight months. In addition, a number of projects implemented in 2014 were planned and implementation started before the change of the government of Tbilisi.

It should be pointed out that the majority of the road rehabilitation work was not implemented in 2014 and is planned to take place in 2015. In addition, project implementation comprises a lengthy process, especially for those projects connected with road infrastructure rehabilitation. Despite the fact that Nika Melia’s statement is not accurate and is a clear exaggeration, the context of his statement about the roads is correct. Damaged roads cause problems for each citizen.

FactCheck concludes that Nika Melia’s statement: Tbilisi City Hall has failed to implement a single project in eight months, is MOSTLY FALSE.