Life in Burnt Houses
Lado Bitchashvili, Shida Kartli
In 2008, several houses were burnt as a result of Russian-Georgian war. “War trace does not easily fade away,” Prime Minister of Georgia Irakli Garibashvili said during his meeting with businessmen in Gori. Garibashvili spoke about the construction of houses for internally displaced people but did not mention about people living in the villages adjacent to the ABL. Neither local authority has any action plan to rehabilitate the burnt houses of locals.
Nowadays, there are four burnt houses in the village. One of them belongs to Giorgi Gablishvili. Gablishvili returned to the village in 2012 and renovated one room on the ground floor; now he lives there with his wife. Gablishvili stretched polyethylene on the iron construction between ground and second floors to protect the house from rain and snow. Social agency seized social allowance from the family and the only source for their income is a plot next to the house. Gablishvili urges for roofing his house for years but in vain.
“How can I abandon my house? The district administration said restoration of this house will cost at least 30 000 lari but I will be glad if they at least roof it. Nevertheless they do not respond to my requests. We lost social allowance and how can we live here?” Giorgi Gablishvili told humanrights.ge.
Working group member of the Coalition for Rebuilding Trust Nukri Kvelashvili said unless state assists the people victimized by the armed conflict, the population will face more and more problems. “Their houses are ruining and the government does not assist them.”
Gori district governor Davit Oniashvili said local budget does not have funds to restore burnt houses but Oniashvili mentioned alternative program which offers similar families to rent houses for them.
“We offer to rent flats to the people, whose houses are ruined. Besides, we can mediate them with the forest department which will provide them with the construction wooden materials,” Davit Oniashvili said.
It is noteworthy that in autumn the owners of the burnt houses will have to leave homes because the polyethylene will not protect them from rain.
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