Infrastructure problems in administrative units of Zugdidi municipality
In 2013, Transparency International Georgia held meetings in 30 villages of Zugdidi municipality together with partner organizations within the framework of Association Atinati’s project Public Involvement for Democratic Self-Governance.
One of the objectives was to identify problems facing these villages and inform relevant public authorities about them. The local population identified a total of 131 issues of concern.
Information about the problems identified by local residents was transferred to Zugdidi Municipal Administration, Samegrelo – Zemo Svaneti Governor’s Administration, and the Ministry of Regional Development and Infrastructure. A special report containing this information was also published on our website.
A couple years later we decided to check the response of public authorities to our report by requesting relevant public information from Zugdidi municipality.
According to the received information, of the 131 problems identified by the residents of 30 villages of Zugdidi municipality:
- 71 have been solved and/or are being worked on.
- 16 are still being considered and/or have been included in the 2016/2017 action plan.
- 6 were transferred to other relevant authorities.
- Some issues fall under the authority of other public agencies.
- The rest could not be implemented due to lack of funds.
- Drainage canals were repaired in the village of Anaklia. More specifically, 25 drainage canals were repaired by Zugdidi municipality’s non-profit legal entity Landscaping Center in 2015.
- The Georgian Municipal Development Fund is building shore protection structures on a 4.2 kilometer stretch of the Black Sea coast. The project costs more than GEL 28 million, and is being funded by a loan from the Asian Development Fund, as well as through co-funding. The project is due to be finished in 2016.
- Drainage canals and gratings were installed in the Berandze, Shengelia, and Chapandze districts of the village of Ganmukhuri.
- The Municipal Development Fund is building shore protection structures along the Black Sea coast. The municipality did not have funds to repair Enguri river embankments in the Chapandze and Bokuchava districts of Ganmukhuri.
- Zugdidi municipality plans to gravel the damaged roads inside Ganmukhuri after the process of supplying natural gas to all residents has been completed.
- The Municipal Development Fund allocated GEL 750 thousand for the renovation of damaged apartment blocks in the village of Chitatskari’s Onaria settlement.
- A water supply system was also built in Onaria settlement. The project cost GEL 155,559.
- Water supply and sewage systems were built and apartment block facades were renovated in the so-called former farm settlement.
- Roads in the village of Tsaishi were partially repaired.
- Irrigation works were launched in 2015.
- Drainage canals were partially repaired in the village of Kakhati. The repair works are planned for 2016 as well.
- Village kindergartens were also renovated.
- Construction of a new kindergarten was launched in the village of Akhalkakhati in 2015. The kindergarten will have the capacity of 77 children and will cost GEL 188 thousand.
- The Landscaping Center also partially repaired local drainage canals. The repair works will continue in 2016.
- The Landscaping Center partially repaired the drainage canals in the village of Kulishkari. The repair works will continue in 2016.
- The inner roads of the village were graveled. Graveling of outside roads is planned for 2016.
- The municipality prepared a project for building a water supply system, with a cost of GEL 140,000. The initial stage of construction has been launched.
- Water supply has been restored to public school N.1 in the village of Jikhashkari.
- The Danish Refugee Council and Zugdidi Municipal Administration renovated the building of kindergarten N.2, which has the capacity of 5 groups of children.
- JSC Energo Pro Georgia completed the installation of individual electricity meters.
- A tender has been announced on the renovation of Shamgona kindergarten in 2016.
- The Agriculture Development Department of Zugdidi Municipal Administration is holding meetings with the residents of Shamgona and other villages, informing them of how to combat various pests. In previous years, the municipality distributed 180 high-pressure and 2,000 hand-held pesticide spraying devices. The municipality plans to increase the number of devices it distributes in 2016.
- Drainage canals in the village of Akhalabastumani were partially repaired. The repair works will continue in 2016.
- Most of the inner roads have been graveled.
- The village kindergarten was renovated.
- Zugdidi Municipal Administration built a new bathroom in Akhalabastumani public school through its municipal school support program.
- Embankments were built on the river Jumi in the village of Didinedzi. The project cost GEL 650 thousand. The construction on the remaining small section of the river will be completed in the near future.
- An outdoor lighting system was installed in the village center.
- In 2016, Zugdidi Municipal Administration plans to build a new 500 meter long drainage canal in the Sakirio district.
- The sewage system was repaired in the IDP settlement in the village of Oktomberi. In addition, drainage canals were partially repaired.
- 68% of the population already has individual electricity meters. Meters will be installed for the remaining 32% in 2016.
- Bathrooms inside Oktomberi public school were renovated.
- Most of the inner roads in the village of Rukhi were graveled. The local drainage canal was repaired.
- The renovation of the village park was also launched.
- Roads in the village of Rike were paved with asphalt. A local bridge was also repaired.
- The problem of water supply was solved in Rike as a result of drilling 5 water wells, and installation of 1.9 kilometers of pipes and a 20-ton water holding tank in 2014-2015.
- The village kindergarten was renovated and expanded to a capacity of 3 groups of children.
- The inner roads in the village of Chkhoria were graveled.
- The bathroom and classrooms of the village kindergarten were renovated. The kindergarten was given new furniture, toys, and books. The municipality plans to build a new kindergarten in the new future.
- JSC Energo Pro Georgia completed the installation of individual electricity meters.
- Most of the roads in the village of Akhalsopeli have been repaired. The road from the village center to the Uchashona district was paved with asphalt.
- Embankments were built on the rivers of Jumsa and Kulistskali.
- The Danish Refugee Council and Zugdidi municipality jointly built a new kindergarten, increasing the capacity to 2 groups of children.
- The Municipal Development Fund funded the installation of a sewage system in the local IDP settlement; however, due to unexpected problems the project has not been completed.
- The Danish Refugee Council funded a project of building a bathroom in a local public school.
- The inner roads of the village of Narazeni were graveled.
- The damaged water supply system in the Shamadela district was repaired.
- 64% of Shamadela district residents already have individual electricity meters. The remaining 34% will receive their meters in the nearest future.
- A second group of children was added to the kindergarten in the village of Koki. As a result, all kindergarten aged children in the village have access to a municipal kindergarten. The kindergarten was fenced, its bathrooms were renovated, and ramps were installed for children with disabilities.
- The majority of drainage canals in the village of Orsantia have been repaired. The repair works will also continue in 2016.
- Several waste containers were placed in the village of Chkaduashi. The municipal Cleaning Service regularly collects the accumulated waste.
- A portion of the inner roads have been graveled. The central road will be repaired in 2016.
- The Danish Refugee Council funded the renovation of the local kindergarten. The kindergarten will receive new equipment in 2016.
- The kindergarten and the library were renovated in the village of Darcheli. The building of the former Culture House was privatized.
- Drainage canals in the village of Ingiri were partially repaired.
- The inner roads of the village were also partially repaired. The roads leading to the cemeteries were paved with asphalt.
- Several functionless buildings in Ingiri were transferred to Zugdidi municipality.
- Natural gas is being supplied to 75% of the village residents, Socar Georgia Ltd plans to supply the remaining 25% in the near time.
- Drainage canals in the village of Kortskheli have been partially repaired. The repair works will continue in 2016.
- A portion of the inner roads have also been repaired.
- Roads in the village of Odishi have been partially repaired. The repair works will continue in 2016.
- Drainage canals have been repaired. The repair works will continue in 2016.
- The sewage system of the local kindergarten has been repaired.
- The bridge connecting the Sakvitatiano district to the rest of the village was also repaired.
- The municipal Cleaning Service started collecting the accumulated waste from the village of Chakvinji.
- Drilling of an artesian well was launched in the Baghmarani district. All families in the district will eventually receive water supply.
- The local kindergarten was renovated, and a sports playground was built.
- The capacity of the local kindergarten was increased to two groups of children in 2015.
- A portion of the inner roads of the village were graveled, and the road connecting the village to Zugdidi was paved with asphalt.
- Repair works (paving with asphalt) of the central road of the village of Abastumani were launched in 2015. The project costs GEL 500 thousand and will be completed in 2016.
- Drainage canals have been repaired in most village districts.
- The village kindergarten was renovated, increasing its capacity to two groups of children.
- Orulu kindergarten was renovated, increasing its capacity to two groups of children. The construction of a new kindergarten is planned for 2016.
(Out of the unimplemented projects, 16 are still being considered and/or have been included in the 2016/2017 action plan, 6 have been transferred to other relevant authorities, and the rest either fall under the authority of other public agencies, or could not be implemented due to lack of funds)
- Anaklia is facing an acute problem regarding land registration. Since 2008, dozens of citizens have been deprived of their land without receiving any kind of compensation.
- Ganmukhuri public school does not have infrastructure adapted for its three students with disabilities.
- The sewage system of the Onaria settlement has been dysfunctional since after the Soviet period.
- The sewage pipe from the district police building near the Onaria settlement is connected to the drainage canal, which periodically pollutes local water wells and creates poor sanitary conditions.
- The majority of Onaria residents were left without agricultural land they had been using for years after it was sold to an Italian company.
- The outpatient clinic that used to serve the residents of Tsaishi as well as the village of Urta is damaged and needs a complete renovation.
- According to Kakhati residents, various buildings from the Soviet period need to be privatized and their physical condition evaluated.
- They also requested building a public toilet in the village center.
- Electric power lines in the Saloguo district need repair.
- The high-voltage pole in the village center needs replacement.
- The water supply system is damaged. The water well drilled through the Village Support Program supplies water only to 30 family.
- The village administration building, located on a river bank, is damaged. Embankments near the building need reinforcement.
- Kulishkari residents also demand the former Culture House at the village center be dismantled. The building is decades old and could collapse at any moment.
- Electric power lines are also damaged in the village. The residents do not have individual electricity meters.
- Kulishkari public school needs a new roof.
- Jikhashkari residents demand the area around the local XVII century fortress be cleaned up and outdoor lighting installed.
- Electric power lines need to be extended to the village cemetery.
- Shamgona residents have requested their agricultural land be lab tested, for which they are ready to pay 50% of the cost. According to the locals, corn and other grain crops have suffered a significant loss in productivity over the last 5 years.
- Only two municipal minibuses serve the village. Shamgona residents have requested Zugdidi Municipal Transport to add a municipal bus to the village.
- Shamgona Culture House requires complete renovation. A few years ago strong winds damaged its roof. Its furniture was also completely destroyed. Village residents have requested the building walls be examined and its roof repaired, in order to eventually use the space for a youth club, a pharmacy, and a supermarket.
- The village kindergarten is located in a damaged wooden building that also houses refugees, leaving enough space for only one group of children. As a result, about 20 children have been left outside the kindergarten. The wooden building that houses the kindergarten is beyond repair.
- There is no library in Shamgona. The village administration building keeps a collection of books that it cannot make available due lack of space.
- Bathrooms inside Oktomberi public school are in disrepair.
- A part of the local population wants to change the name of the village and has requested Zugdidi municipal authorities to survey the residents about possible new names.
- A bridge over the Chkhoushia river in the Mara district needs to be restored. The bridge connects the village to the agricultural lands of its residents.
- Rukhi kindergarten requires complete renovation. The kindergarten administration is unable to increase its capacity (to three groups) due to lack of space, which resulted in more than 20 children being left outside the kindergarten this year.
- The village outpatient clinic does not have water supply. The clinic’s water well is contaminated and needs cleaning.
- The village Culture House building is damaged and needs repair.
- Rike residents have requested the Ministry of Economy to transfer the buildings it owns in the village to Zugdidi municipality.
- Chkhoria residents have requested their agricultural land be lab tested. They state that the productivity of some crops has dramatically declined in recent years.
- The residents also claim that the local agricultural land has become too acidic and requires lime treatment.
- Electric power lines in the Khurcha district have been damaged, resulting in power outages during bad weather.
- Village residents have requested an additional public meeting to discuss the local government reform.
- Orsantia residents have requested the reinforcement of embankments along the Enguri river. Floods over the last 10 years have left 33 hectares of land unfit for agricultural use.
- The residents have also requested their agricultural land be lab tested.
- The elementary school in lower Darcheli requires complete renovation. It is currently located inside a one story wooden building, and held 87 students during the 2013-2014 school year.
- The Darcheli public school N1 also requires renovation. According to the principal, the roof replacement works were done poorly a few years ago, resulting in rainwater reaching inside the building.
- A bridge needs to be built connecting the villages of Kortskheli and Chkaduashi.
- Reinforced concrete structures need to be placed in the landslide zone of the village. 18 landslide affected families have requested compensation and resettlement.
- Most of the inner roads of the village are damaged, especially in the Diddobera district. The road connecting the village to Zugdidi needs to be paved with asphalt.
- 20 families in the landslide zone require resettlement. Also, reinforced concrete structures need to be placed in the landslide zone.
- Roads in the village of Grigolishi are damaged to the point of being unusable by cars. Residents have requested the inner roads be graveled and a 5 kilometer long stretch of road be paved with asphalt.
- Reinforced concrete structures need to be placed in the landslide zone of the village. Eight families need resettlement.
- The Sakikalishvilo district is isolated from the rest of the village due to lack of a bridge. As a result, residents have to travel long distances on foot.
- Individual electricity meters need to be installed.
- Urta residents have requested the repair of their water supply system, replacement of electric power lines, and installation of individual electricity meters.
- Electric power lines and poles in the village need to be replaced. Individual electricity meters also need to be installed.
- Reinforced concrete structures need to be placed in the landslide zone of the village. 15 families have been left without agricultural land due to landslides.
- The village trustee and specialists do not have a place they can work in. The former village administration building is damaged.
- The local outpatient clinic is damaged.
- The Khetseri district is located 10 kilometers away from the center of the village. Due to mountainous terrain and damaged roads Khetseri residents (72 families) cannot access the village kindergarten or the clinic.
- Water supply system needs repair.
- Ergeta residents have requested their agricultural land be lab tested in order to identify the causes of a sudden drop of productivity in recent years.
- They also demand allocation of wood harvesting areas and paving of 5 kilometers of village inner roads with asphalt.
- The existing two minibuses serving the village are insufficient. Residents have requested the addition of a municipal bus.
- Electric power lines and poles need to be replaced in the village of Orulu. Individual electricity meters also need to be installed. The village experiences power outages during windy and rainy weather.
- The local outpatient clinic is damaged.
- Residents have requested the road connecting Orulu with the village of Darcheli be paved with asphalt.
Transparency International Georgia welcomes the efforts of Zugdidi Municipal Administration and other public authorities to implement citizen requested projects. It is a municipality’s main obligation to create well-functioning infrastructure and utility services. We believe that projects implemented by the municipal administration will significantly improve the living and economic conditions of citizens.
In conclusion, we call on:
- Municipal Administrations, Councils, and structural units of other public agencies to hold regular meetings with citizens, so that decision-makers have access to up to date information about their needs. Currently, such meetings are held only once a year within the framework of the Village Support Program.
- Local government authorities to better inform the local population about the new provision of the Local Government Code, which enables citizens to convene a general meeting of their community and request decision-makers to solve specific problems.
- The Ministry of Labor, Health and Social Affairs to renovate village clinics and provide them with necessary medical equipment. Our research shows that many villages face problems in this regard.