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Loophole in Georgian Election code2010-01-13 15:23
The Georgian president managed to break the freshly adopted Election Code amended at the end of December. Mikheil Saakashvili was supposed to nominate candidates for the position of the CEC chairman on January 8 but his delay forced the deputies to amend the law today. Once again the ruling majority has remade the legislative norms to suit themselves.
Georgian president Mikheil Saakashvili has finally nominated three candidates to the post of Central Election Commission chairman.
These are Levan Tarkhnishvili, current CEC chairman, Otar Sichinava, a judge of the Constitutional Court and Zurab Kharatishvili, a member of the CEC group that at the time of 2008 elections monitored pre-election expenditure of political parties.
On January 14 at the latest the CEC's oppositional half (six members) must elect the chairman of the commission out of the triad above.
If the issue is not solved by the majority of votes, the parliament will come into play. The deadline for CEC chairman assignment is January 21.
Deputies had to revise all these terms since the norms stipulated in the updated Election code were violated by the state leader.
The president was supposed to nominate candidates as early as on January 8. At first he wanted to discuss the issue with NGO representatives that would present their list of nominees. The meeting took place only yesterday.
Levan Tarkhnishvili admitted that the procedures connected with terms were violated calling it "a minor violation".
"Naturally there is a minor violation but it doesn't discredit the whole process. This is the price for choosing a candidate", - Tarkhnishvili told Civil.ge.
Mikheil Saakashvili called the opposition not to rush the choice of a candidate. "We don't want to accelerate processes artificially. Two weeks won't change anything. Everyone must have a chance to have a good rest after the New Year's holidays and take a decision without fuss", - the president stated at the meeting with NGO representatives.
Levan Vepkhadze, a Christian Democrat, a leader of the parliamentary minority, retaliated that the president doesn't respect the parliament.
"It's irresponsible to say that the New Year prevents from complying with the law", - he remarked.
As a result Georgia's obedient parliament voted for the amendments in the Election code stipulating new terms of CEC chairman election with 103 votes VS one vote in first and final reading by a simplified procedure.