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Opposition claims majority lacks ex-PM’s consent to approve Supreme Court judges

By Messenger Staff
Wednesday, July 20
A member of the parliamentary opposition United National Movement (UNM) party, Sergo Ratiani, says the legislative body is failing to approve the three candidates presented by the President to the posts of Supreme Court judges, as the parliamentary majority has not yet gained approval over the nominees from Georgia’s ex-Prime Minister, billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili.

Ratiani and the rest of the UNM insist the country is still run by Ivanishvili, who founded the current Georgian Dream (GD) coalition for the 2012 parliamentary elections with the aim of ending the nine-year governance of the UNM.

“As a rule, the parliamentary majority does not have its own views, and just waits for what Ivanishvili will tell them to say and think,” Ratiani said.

Last week, President Giorgi Margvelashvili presented his third nominee, Levan Bodzashvil, for the Supreme Court of Georgia.

Bodzashvili, 42, served as Deputy Secretary of Georgia’s State Security Council, and has years of experience in the legal and diplomatic fields.

Margvelashvili named Bodzashvili instead of Anna Dolidze, Georgia’s ex-Deputy Defence Minister and Margvelashvili’s first pick for the Supreme Court Judge, who was recently appointed as the President’s Parliamentary Secretary.

Parliament must now vote for the new nominee together with two other female candidates - Tamar Laliashvili and Nona Todua - for the post of Supreme Court judge, as they failed to gain the lawmakers’ support some weeks ago.

Last month, the President nominated Dolidze, Todua and Laliashvili as candidates, but none of them gained even half of the necessary 76 votes out of the 150-seat legislative body.

The Supreme Court of Georgia is composed of 12 judges, who are chaired by the head of the Supreme Court of Georgia. The position is currently held by Nino Gvenetadze, who was also named by the President last year.

The legislative body will presumable vote for the candidates during the autumn season as the process lingered.

Majority representative Gia Volski says the decision on the nominees' candidacy will be considered by the new parliament, elected through the upcoming, October parliamentary race.

Volski believes it is a very important process and will require time to come to an end.

The court system is fundamental part of every democratic state, and all the issues related to the changes inside it must always be a priority and must be discussed on time. However, things must not be damaged through discussing such issues in a hasty manner.