After almost four years of populistic and oligaristic rule with Bidzina Ivanishvili’s Georgian Dream, the opinion polls now show that the upcoming parliamentary elections on October 15 is going to be a nail-biter as Georgians go to the ballots. From being in disadvantageous position, the Jarl Hjalmarson Foundation’s co-operation party, the United National Movement, is now less than one percent behind the ruling party.
As the political parties in Georgia are in the starting positing of launching their election campaigns, the Jarl Hjalmarson Foundation held two conferences in co-operation with the UNM. Focus on the conferences were on door-to-door campaigning, and how to approach voters. The conferences also consisted of a workshop, where the participants were able to discuss electoral pledges from the party programme with party representatives, for a better understanding of the party ideology.
The conferences were visited by Mikheil Machavariani, member of the Georgian parliament and the UNM’s political council, and Shorena Gharibashvili, UNM’s campaign manager. Mikheil Machavariani spoke about the party’s liberal-conservative values and how does are mirrored in the party programme. Shorena Gharibashvili on the other hand had a session on the essence of door-to-door campaigning and the importance of the candidates to meet the voters face-to-face.
Oskar Öholm, former member of the Swedish parliament and now secretary general for the Moderate party in Stockholm, chaired the conferences as well and held lectures on campaign work in general with examples and lessons learned from Swedish election campaigns. His sessions ended with a workshop focusing on message design based on the party’s electoral pledges.
The participants were local leaders of party districts throughout Georgia, and the conferences were held on August 24 and August 25 in Tbilisi, respectively.
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