Media Advocacy Coalition Reacts to Discrediting Campaign Against Journalists - საერთაშორისო გამჭვირვალობა - საქართველო

Media Advocacy Coalition Reacts to Discrediting Campaign Against Journalists

28 February, 2023

The Media Advocacy Coalition considers unacceptable any attempt to discredit journalists simply for requesting public information, as evidenced by the cases of disclosure of personal data by administrative bodies and the illegal transfer of such data to third parties.

On January 16, 2023, Tea Giligashvili, chief producer of Mtavari Arkhi TV, became a victim [1] of the disinformation campaign simply because she requested public information from the Parliament. Tea Giligashvili requested public information on expenses in the form prescribed by law, asking what funds were used by members of the ruling party to travel to Italy to attend a football match featuring Khvicha Kvaratskhelia, and who financed their trip. The letter sent to the Georgian Parliament was soon posted on the Georgian Dream-affiliated Facebook page “Sinamdvileshi” (In Fact), accusing [2] Giligashvili of “trying to discredit” the government just for requesting public information. It is worth noting that the ruling party systematically uses the Facebook page to discredit [3] its political opponents, civil society organizations, critical media outlets and journalists, and tries to create negative public opinion by manipulating facts and photos. On January 31, 2023, Tea Giligashvili filed a complaint with the Personal Data Protection Service.

The Parliament of Georgia, as an administrative body, is obliged to strictly observe political impartiality, while the Parliament staffers and the MPs involved in administrative activities have no right to use the information obtained by virtue of their official powers for partisan or political purposes.

This is not the first time that the personal data of a journalist have been illegally transferred to third parties – on October 8, 2022, Vladimer Mgaloblishvili, an MP of the Supreme Council of the Autonomous Republic of Adjara, published on Facebook [4] the answer of the Office of the Adjarian government to the letter requested by Tedo Jorbenadze, the editor of the newspaper “Batumelebi”, which included Tedo Jorbenadze’s personal data. During the investigation of the matter, neither the representatives of the Adjarian government nor the MP of the Supreme Council could remember how the correspondence prepared for the journalist was made public, and the Personal Data Protection Service was unable to determine how the answer prepared for the journalist by the Adjarian government became available to the MP of the Georgian Dream party.

The Media Advocacy Coalition believes that disclosing a legal document received and/or sent by a public agency with partisan interests and attempting to discredit a journalist because of a request for public information is a dangerous practice. This case clearly shows that administrative functions and duties have been intertwined with narrow partisan interests.

The Media Advocacy Coalition calls on:

  • The Office of the Georgian Parliament – to explain how the letter sent by Tea Giligashvili to the Office of the Parliament became available on the ruling party-affiliated social media site.
  • The Personal Data Protection Service – to verify the legality of the letter sent to the Office of the Georgian Parliament as part of journalistic activities and the transfer of the personal data mentioned in this letter to the Facebook page “Sinamdvileshi.”
  • The Government – not to use state resources for partisan purposes and attacks on the media; not to continue malpractice in providing public information and not to restrict the access of citizens and the media to public information unreasonably.

[1] Information about the activity of “Sinamdvileshi”, A Facebook post accessed on 01.02.2023 at

[2) Discrediting campaign against Tea Giligashvili, A Facebook post accessed on 01.02.2023 at

[3] What is a democracy, discreditation and religious propaganda “in reality” - ruling party against critical opinion,, 18.01.2023,

[4] The correspondence addressed to journalist Tedo Jorbenadze is available on the Facebook page of Georgian Dream MP Vladimir Mgaloblishvili, last seen on 01.02.2023,