History of the city
Batumi, the maritime gate of Georgia, is one of the oldest and strategic town. It has two thousand year old history. In Batumi, once was made it’s own money.
The City was built on the 16,6 Kilometer cost of the Black sea from north-East to the South-West. It has deep, safe and natural harbour on the coast of Batumi Bay.
Primary information about batumi, appeared in works of the fourth century B.C Greek philosopher Aristotle. He named the city situated by the black sea in Colcha “batusi” is a Greek geographer phlavius ariane. “batusi” is a Greek word and means “deep”. Indeed Batumi, after Sevastopole, has the deepest and the most convenient harbour.
Archeological activities performed at the entrance of the city, within the territory of the Qorolistqali river, declared that people were inhabited there in the first – second millennium B.C. and had close trade relations to neighbours. The hill called Tamari citadel was considered the center of Batumi. That was economic and cultural center in the Qorolistqali gorge.
In the second century A.D. there was the Roman garrison in the reign of Emperor Adriane in Batumi. In The fifth century King Vaxtang Gorgasali joined in to his state.
In the sixth, seventh, eighth centuries governors of Egrisi and Abkhazi governed Batumi and its lands. There was The village –type settlement around the Batumi castle in the feudal epoch.
Afterwards lands of Batumi, were owned by the gurielis patrimony. At the end of the 15 century in the reign of kakhaber gurieli , Turks achieved to capture those territories. Bat soon Rostom Gurieli, banished them from the Georgian lends. Turks seized Lazeti and nearby territories after his death (1564) they built fortress in battogan, present Batumi. In 1609 Mamia Gurieli destroyed TurkiSh armies.
Nevertheless Turks captured Lazeti and Batumi again at the end of the 17 century. They turned Batumi into a main city of Liva (sandjaqi). Sandjaqi of Batumi included lands from the Mohammedanism strengthened in adjara.
In 1873 Batumi was the main city of lazeti. which was governed by the head of Sandjaqi Mutesarif.
From the beginning of 19 century the Russian Empire started annexation of Georgia and bit by bit its borders getting close to adjara. 1877 - 78 , during the Russia- Ottoman war, interest of Russia and occupied Georgian nation coincided in a certain extant. Emancipation ancient lands from the yoke of Ottomans were of the utmost importance.
At the congress of Berlin (June-13 Jule-13 1878), taking into account a revision of San Stefano peace treaty, Russia managed to maintain main territorial acquirement . In this way adjara was returned to mother-Georgia.
On June 12, 1883 according to the decision of state soviet, the Batumi district was abolished and was joined to the governor of Kutaisi. (The Batumi district was the part of Kutaisi from July 18- 1883 to July 1, 1903 ). On April 25,1888 was received the emperor’s command and on April 28,1888 Batumi was given the status of city. According to it, city chief’s office should be not voting, but nominating by the Caucasus Government .
On August 25, and on September 2, 1888 the first election was held. On October 1, 1888, after the officials electing and making an oath, the board of city administration started functioning. K.D. Gavronski was nominated as a chief of city.
36 voters were elected at a Batumi city summit. First summit membership was working during 6 years. On October 12, 1894 voters’ election was held , where 35 voters were elected January 25, 1895 self- governmental afficials’ election was held . Luka Asatiani was elected as a city chief.
At present, the street, where the Batumi city council is situated – was given the name of Luka Asatiani.
Firstly, the city self-governmental was in a hired flat of prince Gurieli , at the corner of Marini and Mikheil Streets. The City council’s large, comfortable building with a big hall was built in 1902. Except the office and construction departments, there were city pawnshop and other units including the library on the ground floor. Today this majestic building beautifies the city and attracts peoples’ attention.
On November 10, 1902 summit election of third convocation was held. according to it 24 voters were elected. On March 24, 1903 self- government officials’ election was held and prince I.Z Andronikashvili was elected as a chief of city. G.A. Volski became the member of summit and I.S. Meskhi the city secretary.
Ivane Andronikashvili, the heir of Luka Asatiani justified peoples’ confidence . He was leading the city during 17 years.
On August 17, 1915 city chief’s election was held. Ivane Andronikashvili was elected for fourth time with the majority of voters. Ivane Andronikashvili retired in 1916, and his post took Evgeni Krinitski (daraxvelidze) who was Georgien.
In 1917, after the February revolution, Evgeni Krinitki, was nominated as a commissar of Batumi district, Who was keeping the stability during this period.
Evgeni Krinitski was changed with V. Sabakhtarishvili, Sabakhtarishvili with Javakhishvili, Javakhishvili- Anjafaridze. So, Batumi always was led by Georgians.
( The board of city administration was functioning continually from 1888 up to 1921, after Adjara’s joining to the Soviet Union.)
On July 16, 1921 was published the decree of the Georgian revolution committee number 54. According to it, the autonomous republic of Adjara was established and Batumi was declared as it’s centre.
After Adjara’s joining to the Soviet Union, the city summit was called an the executive committee of city council. The city self-government, as everywhere, was led by communist regime.
On March 9, 1930, the new membership of the city council presidium were elected, whose chairman became Ioseb Giorgadze.
After Adjara’s joining to the Soviet Union. The most famous man became Efrem Jiqia, He worked as a chairman of the Executive committee in 1941- 1953 years.
The city council wasn’t functioning as a self-government unit during 90-years, and decisions were made individually. At this period, the leader of the autonomous republic was Aslan Abashidze, whose separative regime ended after the Adjara’s Rose Revolution, on May 6, 2004.
On September 12, 2006 the local self governmental election of the representative unit was held. From that, started new and importing stage in our City history.
The four year mandate was given to 15 deputies. These are : Badri Qajaia, Jumber Kaxidze, Goderzi Totochava, Giorgi Diasamidze,Vaxtang Glonti, Qartlos MaxaradZe, Mate Takidze, Davit Chkartishvili, Nugzar Chxeidze, Irakli Tavartkiladze, Teimuraz Kurashvili, Davit Robaqidze and Irakli Chavleishvili.
12 mandates were given to the deputies from the “National movements” according to the roll and card vote. From the other 3 mandates, one was given to the Labourist David Robaqidze and two mandates to Irakli Chavleishvili and Teimuraz Kurashvili – the representatives of the block “Davitashvili, khidasheli, berdzenishvili”.
At the first meeting, Badri Qajaia was elected by a secret ballot as a city council chairman and on October 27, Irakli Tavartkiladze was elected as the city Mayor.
On 13 of August 2007 Batumi Mayor Irakli Tavartkiladze made statement of his resignation.
On 14 of September 2007 the city council elected new Mayer Robert Chkhaidze.
2008 of 14 November the deputies of Batumi city-council have chosen the new chairman Giorgi Kirtadze by secret ballot.
30th of May of 2010 on City council meeting 15 person were present instead of 25. 20 mandates from 25 were for the United National Movement. 2 for United Christian Democrats, 2 for National Council and 1 Republic Party.
The results were as follows: in 10 majoritary section members of United National Movement has gained the success. Jumber Kakhidze – Tamari district, Davit Kasradze – Boni-Gorodok district, Tamaz Topuridze – Old Batumi district, Besarion Chokhonelidze Old Batumi district, Geno Tebidze – Khimshiashvili district, Nodar Putkaradze – Aghmashenebeli district, Giorgi Kirtadze – Bagrationi I district, Giorgi Kavazashvili – Bagrationi II district, Giorgi Gabaidze – Bagrationi III district, Nukri Dolidze – Aiport district.
According to the list of United National Movement: Robert Chkhaidze, Goderdzi Totochava, Eka Targamadze, Giorgi Diasamidze, Gia Abuladze, Nodari Dumbadze, Zauri Patladze, Tamaz Gorgiladze, Manana Iluridze, Aleko Chkhartishvili.
Mandates for oppositional parties were redistributed: Vaja Verulidze, Nazibrola Kobuladze – United Christian Democrats. Mamuli Jghenti, Jumber Kobaladze - National Council. Irakli Chavleishvili - Republic Party.
On 17th June of 2010 City council elected on a second term Bagrationi district majoritary deputy Giorgi Kirtadze as a City council chairman with plurality. And Tamari district majoritary deputy Jumber Kakhidze as his assistant.
On the same day City council chairman with the plurality of City council members signed a document about the assignation of Robert Chxaidze as a City Mayor. And his 11th number in city council took Nazi Putkaradze.
On 6th August of 2010 City council member Gia Abuladze lost his status and assigned as a minister of education culture and sport of Autonomus Rebublic of Adjaria. And his 12th number in City council was replaced by Mariza Abashidze.
Activities of the deputies are controlled according to European parties by legislation of Georgia “About Local Self-government” whereas City council has increased rights. City council is choosing executive government. About the Self-government - new organic commandment made the legislations more concrete, unlike the old commandment “about the self-government and government” in the past. In the past three stages were functioning - Sakrebulo as a self-governing representing organization, second – government, as executive organization of City council and also as local governing organization. Which according to presidents’ commandment was called City council.
Now “about the self-government” according to the renovations in organic legislation of Georgia on 28th December 2009 (which was actuated on 30th of May of 2010 after the final results of election of local self-government) significantly expended proxies of City council and chairman of city council . City council chairman makes all decisions of local issues. And the function of the City council is only executing these decisions.