The messenger logo

Georgia's 4th president will have a new role

By Messenger Staff
Monday, October 28
Georgia’s fourth president will hold the position legitimized by a democratic election. No military coup, no revolution, no ousting of the former president, no violence… at last, due to the consistent political goodwill of the current leadership, Georgia has achieved the stage of changing its political power in a peaceful and democratic way.

After the new president is inaugurated, the new model of the state constitution will enter into force. This model of the constitution adopted in 2010 suggests absolutely different rights and powers for the newly elected president. According to this model, the rights and he powers of the new president will be decreased considerably. The parliament and the government will take over many responsibilities of the current president. In fact, the new Prime Minister who still remains incognito, but who will inherit the rights and powers of the current PM Bidzina Ivanishvili, will become the number one person in the country.

Of course in 2010, when, then governing United National Movement (UNM) was adopting these radical changes to the state constitution, it could have never imagined that some other party rather than then President Mikheil Saakashvili would have benefied from these proposed changes.

As his two presidential terms were expiring, the UNM headed by Saakashvili introduced these changes to the legislation to comfortably prepare the armchair of the leader of the nation to Saakashvili, so that he could continue ruling the country from the PM’s position.

However, the history is full of surprises and this was the case in this regard as well. Somebody else yet unknown will take over the biggest levers of power in Georgia. If one goes deep into the constitution, they can reveal that the mechanism of removing the PM is very complicated.

Georgia now has to hope that the new PM will be a modest person, full of common sense, dignity, and love towards the nation; someone who will not abuse the rights and powers of his position and govern the country with justice.

Now as soon as the new president will be inaugurated the new model of governance will start functioning. The current government will resign and the new cabinet should be submitted to the parliament. PM’s candidacy should also be submitted to the legislative body, which has to confirm the PM and the government.

The parliamentary majority – the Georgian Dream coalition, will submit the name of the PM who should then submit the names of the proposed cabinet of ministers. The parliament will have to adopt/reject them.

The PM and his government will become the leading figure in implementation of the domestic and foreign policy of the country. According to the state constitution, the president remains the commander-in-chief of the armed forces and would represent the country in foreign relations although he cannot sign the documents and make decisions without receiving the government’s consent. The president can however, appoint ambassadors, carry out negotiations, but always under the supervision of the PM and the government. Moreover, according to the new model of the constitution, any order or regulation issued by the president will need the PM’s endorsement to become valid (the only exception is the military development in the country).

The president has a very limited opportunity to discharge the parliament. The mechanism for overcoming the presidential veto becomes much easier. The president will have no rights to hold a position in the political party. He cannot control the law enforcement ministries.

A lot will depend on the harmonious relations between the PM and the president. Otherwise, the country can face many problems. So, under these circumstances, the tandem of the president and the PM from the Georgian Dream coalition, should work harmoniously for the benefit of the country.