International observers about the presidential election in Georgia
30 October, 2018
International observers about the presidential election in Georgia
The presidential election took place on the 28th of October in Georgia. It was the last election in which the president will be selected by popular vote. After that, presidents will be picked by an electoral college of 300 lawmakers and regional officials.

The initial results from Georgia’s presidential election showed that neither of the two frontrunners, Salome Zourabichvili who is backed by the ruling party and Grigol Vashadze from an opposition coalition, was likely to win enough votes to secure
victory and they would face a second round run-off vote.
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Salome Zourabichvili and Grigol Vashadze

The process was monitored by local and international observers. The head of the European Parliament Parliamentary Assembly’s observation delegation Laima Andrikienė said that European Parliament supports Georgia and its democracy. She noted the significance of the lack of violence during election day that allowed citizens to peacefully realize their democratic rights. She also expressed concern over the decision of Russia, South Ossetia, Abkhazia, and their de facto rulers to close the administrative borders and to prevent many Georgians from voting in this year’s election.
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Laima Andrikiene, Photo courtesy: www.delfi.lt

Laima Andrikiene talked about the nature of pre-election debates. She pointed out that pre-election debates were often focused on personal attacks and charges rather than specific future perspectives. She also mentioned that as Georgia aspires to join the European Union, it should be taken into consideration that stating that the observer organizations promote fascism is unacceptable. ,,Young democracy needs free civil society that is trusted, protected and supported,” stated Andrikiene.
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Rasa Juknevičienė, Photo courtesy: www.delfi.lt

Rasa Juknevičienė, Head of the NATO PA delegation stated that there were instances of the misuse of state resources, and the involvement of senior state officials from the ruling party in campaigning was not always in line with the law, a substantial imbalance in donations. Besides, verbal abuse was directed at the non-governmental organizations in Georgia that was a total contrast to the election in 2013.
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Laura Thornton, Photo courtesy: www.tabula.ge

Laura Thornton, NDI’s resident director in Georgia, said that the pre-election situation was quite negative. Although it was significant to involve civil society and organizations in the process, there was still a negative attitude towards them. The campaigns were affected by corruption instances to some extent. The Media and voters faced the situation where everything was regarded as either black or white - they were either supporters of a candidate or against him/her.

Related stories:

Funny incidents on Election Day in Georgia

Deadline for the second round of presidential elections in Georgia is December 2

Foreign Observers of NDI and IRI Assess Georgia’s 2016 Elections

Salome Zourabichvili as Independent Candidate

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