The Parliament starts consideration of the changes to the formation rules of the Central Election Commission.
On the initiative of Georgian Dream MPs, the Procedural Issues and Rules Committee and the Legal Issues Committee will discuss the draft amendments to the Election Code and the Parliament’s Rules and Procedures at the May 15 session.
With the new bill, the President is deprived of the prerogative to present to the Parliament the candidates for the chairmanship and so-called professional membership of the Central Election Commission. The Speaker of the Parliament will select the candidates instead of the President. The procedure and quorum related to their election is also being changed – if the Parliament supports the chairman and members of the CEC with a majority (76 votes), they will occupy the position for a period of 5 years. The relevant amendments to the Election Code and the Parliament’s Rules and Procedures were prepared by the deputies of the Georgian Dream faction and will be presented at the next meeting of the Bureau.
According to the draft law, the Chairman of the Parliament will announce the competition for the selection of the chairman and members of the CEC and create a competition commission. The Speaker of the Parliament shall submit to the Parliament the nominations of the chairman and members of the CEC. The chairman and members of the CEC will be elected by the Parliament with the majority of the full composition.
The legislative initiative of the majority provides for the presence of one representative of the President in the competition commission. According to the draft, if all the vacancies are not filled as a result of the voting, the President shall nominate another candidate participating in the relevant competition and the candidate nominated by the President shall be voted on.
The authors of the bill are MPs: Mamuka Mdinaradze, Givi Mikanadze, Davit Matikashvili, Rati Ionatamishvili and Irakli Shatakishvili. According to the initiators, there is no legal practice similar to the rule in force today for the selection of candidates for CEC chairman and members in any developed country.
For information, according to the current legislation, candidates for the chairmanship and membership of the CEC shall be submitted to the Parliament for election by the President, who before that creates a competition commission and announces a competition. As for the manner and procedure of their election by the Parliament, voting is initially held with a 2/3 quorum at the plenary session. If the chairman of the CEC cannot be elected by 2/3, they are voted on by the majority of the full composition.
The chairman of the CEC, elected by a 2/3 quorum, holds the position for a 5-year term, approved by a simple majority – for a 6-month term. The current model for staffing the CEC is part of the Charles Michel agreement.
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