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Referendum for Marriage Definition approved by CEC

By Tatia Megeneishvili
Thursday, August 4
The Central Election Commission of Georgia (CEC) has approved a referendum bid on defining marriage as union of a man and a woman in the Georgian constitution.

The CEC made its decision after the campaigners collected more than 200, 000 signatures. However, Parliament has not yet approved the changes in the Constitution.

Georgia’s President Giorgi Margvelashvili now has 30 days to make a decision concerning this issue. He should either approve the proposed referendum or decline it.

The initiative was taken by former Deputy Minister of Diaspora Sandro Bregadze, former member of Alliance of Patriots Party Soso Manjavidze, and Director of the Demographic Society XXI Zviad Tomaradze.

In case the President approves the referendum, the Prime Minister of Georgia should then give it the go ahead.

Speaker of the CEC Ana Mikeladze said that all the necessary procedures have already been held.

“The CEC already has sent all the necessary documentation for a referendum to the President. Now everything is up to him,” stressed Mikeladze.

Soso Manjavidze said that he expects Margvelashvili will approve the referendum.

“It is hard to believe that the President will go against the will of 200,000 people of his country,” stated Manjavidze.

Member of Parliament Gia Zhorzholiani said that next parliament may approve the changes in the constitution.

Meanwhile, members of the Republican Party think that there is no need to hold a referendum or add any changes to the Constitution.

Speaker of Parliament and the member of the Republican Party Davit Usupashvili stated his position.

“Georgia’s Civil Code already defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman and the Constitution needs no such specification,” he stated.

About a month ago, another proposed referendum about same-sex marriage was rejected by CEC because not enough signatures were collected.