The Parliament of Georgia approved the draft law on the Constitutional Court in the third reading on May 14, which reads that a plenum session will be conducted within one month after all members of the court take an oath, or in case of the early suspension of the authority of the Constitutional Court Chairman.
Opposition against changes
By Tatia Megeneishvili
Monday, May 16
The plenum session will elect the Constitutional Court Chairman and his/her two deputies for a 5-year term. The bill was supported by 81 lawmakers.
The Constitutional Court will have the right to nominate its chairman. The President, the Parliament Speaker and the Chairman of the Supreme Court will no longer be involved in the nomination of the candidate.
According to the changes, the Chairman of the Constitutional Court or his/her deputies cannot be elected for a second term.
Also, the decision-making quorum of the Constitutional Court plenum was increased by 2/3.
The session was not attended by the United National Movement (UNM) in protest. The UNM made a statement that the bill will pull down the judicial system. They also called on the President of Georgia to veto the amendments.
The leader of the UNM, Davit Bakradze, criticized the bill.
"Our society got used to the fact that people's concerns and interests have never been significant for our government. The only thing they care about is former Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili's wishes. These amendments are nothing but the attempts of the majority to amend the law on the Constitutional Court at all costs, by violation of all procedures and laws, in the fastest manner,” stated Bakradze.
According to Bakradze, the changes will institutionally diminish the reputation and integrity of the Constitutional Court.
“This law will enable the government to control the Constitutional Court. This law violates international obligations. It is contrary to the recommendations of the Venice Commission,” stated Bakradze.
He also called on Non-governmental Organizations (NGO) to become involved in the processes.