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Neither Parliament nor Gov’t against presidential elections

By Messenger Staff
Thursday, February 9
Georgia’s Parliament Speaker and head of the State Constitutional Commission working on amendments in the country’s main laws, Irakli Kobakhidze, claims that neither Parliament nor the government has any political interest in changing the rule of the presidential elections.

Kobakhidze made his statement in response to the opposition’s speculations that the current ruling team plans to annul the president’s direct election, as the current President, Giorgi Margvelashvili, is “disliked” by the ruling party and the founder of the ruling party, billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili.

“The Commission has two goals: first, to create a system that will ensure our country's long-term democratic development, and second, to bring the system in full compliance with the principles of the constitutional law.

As for the rule of direct presidential elections, in-depth discussion will be held in this regard in the State Constitutional Commission; we have not had a proper discussion on this matter so far,” Kobakhidze stated.

The previous ruling United National Movement leadership changed Georgia’s constitution in 2010, changing the presidential republic into a parliamentary model.

The current Georgian Dream leadership claims the change was introduced ex-President Mikheil Saakashvili wanted to become Prime Minister after his two terms in the presidential post expired in 2013.

The Georgian Dream authorities say the current constitution does not keep balance between the state institutions, which causes controversies and disputes.

The constitution must be changed, as the country has already seen various problems arise between the President and Prime Minister over certain powers and rights.

If Georgia wishes to be a parliamentary republic, there will be no need for a president with significant powers.

The decrease of political power for the president will save solid financing, as currently millions are spent from the state budget on the president’s and his administration’s needs. It will be substantial for such a poor country as Georgia.

However, all the changes and amendments in the constitution must be based on a large-scale consensus, with no question marks hanging over possible political interests or motives of the players.