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Parliament’s Legal Committee supports candidate for Supreme Court

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Thursday, February 26
The president’s pick for the post for Chairman of the Supreme Court of Georgia, Nino Gvenetadze, gained the support of Parliament’s Legal Committee on February 25.

The voting procedure was preceded by Gvenetadze’s speech and a question and answer session.

The Parliament Committee for Legal Affairs failed twice on February 23 to hold a hearing in Tbilisi regarding the Supreme Court chairperson nomination due to a lack of a quorum.

“The process of selecting and nominating the candidate was open and transparent for all players. I hope for the same attitude from parliament,” President Margvelashvili said.

It still remains unclear whether Gvenetadze gets 76 votes from MPs or not.

The majority is in consultation over the issue.

GD parliamentary majority leader, MP Davit Saganelidze, said that in general, the stance of the GD lawmakers towards Gvenetadze was quite positive, but that there are also several MPs who have different approaches.

“We will try to make decision via consensus,” he said, but also did not rule out that some GD lawmakers may vote independently, and not in line with the parliamentary majority’s decision.

Member of the opposition Free Democrats Shalva Shavgulidze, who was among the 28 candidates for the post, has revealed his support to Gvenetadze, stating that his team was also likely to vote in favor of her.

The opposition United National Movement (UNM) will not vote for her. The party claims that Gvenetadze was part of the Shevardnadze period staff, and was also affiliated with the Republican Party.

President of Georgia Giorgi Margvelashvili named former Judge of the Supreme Court Nino Gvenetadze as his candidate for the post on February 17. The president made his choice from the list of 28 candidates provided by various organizations and NGOs.

Dr. Gvenetadze, 51, is a researcher at Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law in Germany. She is also head of the Masters and PhD programs at the School of Law at the Tbilisi-based Georgian American University.

Gvenetadze was one of the three judges who openly spoke about the pressure on the court system under the previous authorities in 2005. She was dismissed by the judicial disciplinary commission in December, 2005, and accused of misconduct. Before serving for six years as a member of the Supreme Court till late 2005, Gvenetadze was the head of the Georgian Young Lawyers’ Association 1998-1999.