Latest on the Weekend's By-Elections

All the votes of the by-elections that took place in Tbilisi and the regions of Georgia on May 19 have been counted by the Central Election Commission of Georgia (CEC).

According to the preliminary results, the candidates of the ruling Georgian Dream Party have succeeded, and obtained the status of mayors of five cities: Marneuli, Zestafoni, Chiatura, Zugdidi and Khulo, as well as gaining seats in eight city assemblies countrywide.

However, a second round is to be held in the district of Mtatsminda in Tbilisi, as none of the candidates were able to pass the 50% threshold. Lado Kakahdze, the Georgian Dream candidate, and Shalva Shavgulidze, representing the United National Movement, will compete in the next round.

The representatives of the government have already commented on the results of by-elections.

The PM Mamuka Bakhtadze stated that: "This is the greatest achievement of our team, a political achievement we are particularly proud of. Today, Georgian society, as well as the international community once again saw elections in Georgia happening in a free and democratic environment.” He went on to express his gratitude to the Central Election Commission representatives and the law enforcers for their “professionalism."

The PM also pointed out a number of conformations that took place on election day, saying that despite the attempts of one of the political forces to cause instability at the elections, the government took the responsibility “to ensure the highest standard of elections in Georgia.”

The results of the recent by-elections were also assessed by the opposition, who spoke out against their validity.

Former First Lady Sandra Roelofs, who was a mayor candidate of the United Opposition in the city of Zugdidi, claims she was the winner of the elections and will protest the announced results with her supporters.  

By Ketevan Kvaratskheliya

20 May 2019 16:30