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Georgia’s President launches ‘Constitution for All’ campaign

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Wednesday, March 15
President of Georgia Giorgi Margvelashvili launched the 'Constitution for All' campaign initiated by him from the eastern Kakheti region on March 13.

The President stressed while meeting with locals that the key goal of the campaign was to learn the public's views about changes they wished to see in the revised constitution.

The President’s campaign came after the creation of the 73-member state Constitutional Commission, composed of lawmakers, experts, court figures and NGOs, to present a draft of constitutional amendments before the end of April this year.

The President originally proposed to co-chair the commission with the Prime Minister and Parliament Chair himself, but his request was denied, as when the commission was originally established the President’s administration refused to participate in its activities.

“My goal was to involve people in the discussion about the constitution and I am doing this,” Margvelashvili said in response to the statements of the parliamentary majority members who criticized his campaign.

The President stressed he did not discuss any model of the Constitution; he only talked to people about what they want.

"I want to call on the public to be engaged in the discussions about the constitution. We talk about what we want to see in the constitution. Of course, we do not consider any particular model. We just talk about how to create a more unified and stronger legal state,” said Margvelashvili.

“Today we are talking about the constitution…I feel very thrilled when I talk over this issue with Georgian citizens because we are talking, thinking and planning the law which should define our lives,” Margvelashvi told people in the Kakheti region.

Commenting on the President’s campaign, Parliament Chair Irakli Kobakhidze said unlike the President’s agenda over the constitution, his agenda was “rational and logical.”

Kobakhidze stressed that holding large-scaled public discussions about amendments to the country’s main law was planned when the Constitutional Commission presented the draft of the changes.

“Such a discussion has meaning when there is a document to discuss,” Kobakhidze said.

He added it would be more beneficial if the President’s people participated in the activities of the commission and took part in preparing the amendments.

The initiative of amending the constitution and creation a commission for this belonged to the ruling Georgian Dream team, as they and many people in the country believe that the changes made to the constitution under the United National Movement leadership in 2010 were damaging the country.