Presidential candidate Badri Patarkatsishvili is planning on spending USD 1 billion of his personal wealth on social programs if elected President, MP Valery Gelbakhiani, a senior Patarkatsishvili election campaign official, said on December 11.
“This will be his own money and not money from the state budget,” Gelbakhiani said in an interview with the Georgian Public Broadcaster. “Much of the speculation that has emerged is true, but I will refrain from speaking about the details, because it would be better if Mr. Patarkatsishvili himself spoke about it when he returns to Georgia.”
Gelbakhiani was referring to Georgian press reports earlier the same day that suggested Patarkatsishvili would pay the population’s electricity and gas bills if elected.
Levan Tarkhnishvili, the chairman of the Central Election Commission, said that if the reports were confirmed, Patarkatsishvili’s pledge might be regarded as “indirect bribery of voters.”