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Compiled by Messenger staff
Wednesday, January 9
“Presidential elections will be a confrontation between Saakashvili and Ivanishvili, not between candidates”

Political and social relations experts believe that considering his political experience and international image Irakli Alasania has the best chance in elections. Newspaper Rezonansi reports that after the parliamentary elections Bidzina Ivanishvili announced that he would be glad to see Vakhtang Khmaladze take over the presidential post. However, Irakli Alsania also does not exclude the possibility of being a candidate.

Political analyst Korneli Kakachia says that despite his great respect for Vakhtang Khmaladze, he thinks Alasania has a better chance to become president, as he meets all the necessary criteria. He thinks that any candidate from the United National Movement will be associated with the party, which does not enjoy the highest ratings at the moment. Therefore, the candidates from the UNM will have lower odds in the election, unless drastic changes are carried out in Georgian politics.

“I don’t think it is necessary for an individual to belong to a political party in order to be presented as a candidate for presidential elections,” political analyst Soso Tsiskarishvili told the newspaper. He neither excludes that Nino Burjanadze can also be nominated by the Georgian Dream or the coalition can support her candidate named by some other party.

What do public figures think about prolongation of the presidential term?

According to the current state constitution, Mikheil Saakashvili is the president until the October presidential elections later this year; it is unconstitutional to try and legitimize his presidency, reads the petition of Saakashvili’s supporters released via Facebook. The authors of the petition– a group called The Patriots, say they started gathering signatures of citizens who admit to the supremacy of the state constitution and law and also support Saakashvili’s presidency until the scheduled elections.

Rezonansi asked public figures to share their opinion about the prolongation of Saakashvili’s presidential term.

Lawyer Gela Nikolaishvili thinks that it would be better if the President and parliament had considered the law and statehood when making anti-constitutional decision about illegal prolongation of presidential term for the whole ten months. Nikolaishvili thinks that Constitutional Court should fix this inaccuracy.

Architect Lado Vardosanidze also thinks that either the Constitutional Court or any international organization can put an end to the dispute over this issue. “The resistance should be overcome in the legal frames,” he said. Vardosanidze does not find Saakashvili’s resignation necessary. He thinks that the Georgian people need adequate argumentation of the lawyers or constitutionalists.

“The position of Saakashvili’s supporters is illegal,” Philologist Nodar Natadze told Rezonansi stressing that Saakashvili should not only resign but he should also sentenced. According to historian Tedo Dundua, the president had made the parliament “obedient” in his wish to make constitutional changes for prolonging his presidential term. “On the one hand it is legal, as the parliament adopted law. However, is under the question whether this parliament was chosen in a democratic way.