SUKHUM -- On November 16 presidential candidates’ campaign started on the Abkhaz State TV and Radio Company. According to the draws held by the Central Election Commission on November 11, the first week (from November 16 till November 20) presidential candidates will appear on the Abkhaz State TV and Radio Company (ASTRC) for one hour and answer voters’ questions. Instead a candidate can give a promotional video one hour long to the ASTRC.
Presidential candidate Zaur Ardzinba, according to draws should have been the first to appear on the ASTRC; however he has chosen the second variant, and the ASTRC broadcast a film about him “Abkhazia is waiting for changes”. The candidate himself appears on it, his battle friends, colleagues from the Abkhaz Sea shipping company which he has managed for 15 years already, as well as election staff and youth organizations representatives speak about him.
“We have won the war, obtained independence which was recognized first of all by the great power - the Russian Federation. And now it’s very important how correct will be the steps we’ll make in the future”, Zaur Ardzinba says.
From morning November 16 in the sequence also determined by the Central Election Commission’s draws, three-minute promotional videos of the presidential candidates are broadcast three times a day on the ASTRC.
All presidential candidates in the Republic of Abkhazia are given 4 hours of free airtime on the state TV and radio. Presidential candidates can also give promotional video up to 3 minutes long which will be broadcast 3 times a day. The promotional videos are funded by the presidential candidates themselves.
Meanwhile the “Abaza-TV” private TV channel also started officially the election campaign on November 16. The first video is dedicated to the candidate Beslan Butba who is a TV cannel founder. However, according to "Abaza-TV", all presidential candidates will be given airtime on equal terms as the law demands.