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Alasania discusses electoral code amendments with analysts

By Mzia Kupunia
Wednesday, December 2
The leader of the Alliance for Georgia held meetings with representatives of the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies (GFSIS) and Experts Club on Tuesday at which he introduced to them the Election Code amendments package worked out by the Alliance.

Holding democratic elections is necessary for maintaining stability in the country, Alasania said after the meeting with GFSIS members. “This is the only way to eliminate political confrontation in the country,” Alasania told journalists. “The fight should go on, and all forces,, which are planning to participate in the election process,, should stand together and try to change the Government through elections,” he added.

Alasania also spoke about the need to “carry on the fight” after the meeting with Experts Club analysts. “The experts are asking us to continue the fight to change the election environment. They asked us to be principled in struggling to set a 50 percent barrier for the Mayoral elections,” the leader of the Alliance for Georgia noted. “Today’s meeting is proof that we should continue the political struggle, however we should have close contact with society in this fight,” he added.

Tbilisi residents will decide what kind of Mayor they need, Alasania stated. “All political parties have right to nominate their own candidate for Tbilisi Mayor,” he said, referring to the nomination of Davit Iakobidze as the Democratic Party candidate. “Tbilisi residents will make up their minds later who they wish to vote for,” he said. Alasania suggested that if the elections are held democratically in a competitive environment this will enable the people to choose their favourite candidate. “The reform of the election system has not ended yet. I am sure that Tbilisi residents will express their opinion,” he said.

Alasania spoke about the Government's “new method of rigging elections.” “This involves bringing people in from the regions and registering them temporarily as Tbilisi residents,” he said. “The Alliance for Georgia will expose possible cases of election rigging and I hope that the Georgian media will also participate in this process,” Alasania added.

Some analysts said there is sense in participating in the Mayoral elections only under “certain conditions”. “It depends on how things develop. There is a big chance that Alasania will participate in the elections, however we cannot exclude the possibility that if the election environment stays the same Alasania will refuse to run,” Archil Gegeshidze of GFSIS said on Tuesday. He stressed that democratic local elections could guarantee stability in Georgia. “The whole world is watching to see how devoted we are to our declared democratic principles. Irakli Alasania has his own vision and is trying to achieve stability and consolidation in the country through democratisation,” Gegeshidze noted.

Independent political analyst and President of the Experts Club Soso Tsiskarishvili said that the meeting had been dedicated to exchanging views on the current situation, not persuading any force to participate or not participate in the elections. “The civil sector is not responsible for convincing anyone what to do,” he told The Messenger. Analysts suggest it is up to Alasania and his party to decide if it wants to take part in the Mayoral elections. “All we can do is listen to them and give advice,” analyst Zurab Abashidze said, adding that first of all the Alliance should fight to change the election environment in the country.