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Balance of governing bodies

By Messenger Staff
Monday, April 1
The constitutional balance of the governing bodies remains an acute problem for Georgia. Currently, there is a problem of limiting the extended powers of President. However, after the election of a new president in October 2013, another problem will appear, as in the constitution there are extended powers granted to the Prime Minister.

This faulty decision was adopted by the previous, so-called ‘Rose Parliament’ to grant the current President Mikheil Saakashvili, an opportunity to comfortably move to the Prime Minister’s arm-chair, receive unlimited power in this new position and continue his reign after his term limits as president would have expired. The October 1, 2012 Parliamentary elections ended this option. However, the constitutional amendments remain in the document.

The Chairman of the Parliamentary Commission for legal issues, Vakhtang Khmaladze, recently stated that nobody in the country should have the authority to violate the balance of rights and powers in the country. He said that these powers are distributed unevenly and the president exercises extra powers.

According to the current constitution, these powers are automatically moved into the PM’s hands. Therefore, the MP recommends immediately improving the situation. The constitutional system should be fairly balanced.

Georgian Dream members declare that high-scale constitutional reform should be carried out in the country. However, the problem is that the Georgian Dream has no constitutional majority in the parliament and even the coalition itself is not unanimous about the changes.

The Georgian Dream can possibly have the support of the opposition in the issue of limiting the PM’s powers. However, the constitutional changes could presumably be of larger scale.

There is another idea that the president could be elected by the Parliament. Khmaladze suggests that the changes should be introduced to the constitution before the presidential election campaign is started. But the political forces in the country have been in stand-by mode because on April 19, the oppositional United National Movement (UNM) is planning to organize a large-scale rally in the streets of Tbilisi. And during the following ten days, President Saakashvili could dissolve the Parliament.

So, nowadays the situation is not clear and the politicians, analysts and ordinary citizens are waiting on further developments to unfold.