Georgia’s Public Defender Comments on Interim Elections

Georgian Public defender, Nino Lomjaria has commented on the interim elections in Georgia, that took place on May 19.

The Ombudsman says that representatives of the Public Defender of Georgia were actively monitoring the midterm elections throughout the day and they found a number of problems, like in previous elections.

“In particular, during the day, various public sources were spreading reports about alleged bribery of voters. It is of utmost importance the responsible authorities to provide a thorough and objective inquiry of all such cases and to respond to the violations timely and effectively, in order to identify relevant persons and take adequate measures against them,” she said.

She noted that mass mobilization of coordinators of political parties, who were collecting information about the arrival of voters at the polling stations, remained one of the main challenges. Although the existing legislative framework does not prohibit such activities of coordinators, the Public Defender considers that this vicious practice is leverage to influence the will of voters and this issue needs to be regulated in the future in order to ensure expression of free will by voters in a peaceful and free environment.

According to the Public Defender, a number of incidents of physical confrontation and violence that occurred on May 19 harm the peaceful and safe electoral environment. 

The Georgian Central Election Commission has counted all the votes cast in yesterday’s by-elections in Tbilisi and the regions.

According to the preliminary results, candidates of the Georgian Dream ruling party won the race for mayors in five cities, as well as seats in eight city assemblies.

The second round of elections will take place only in the Mtatsminda district of Tbilisi, where none of the candidates managed to pass the 50% threshold.

By Thea Morrison




20 May 2019 22:56