National democratic institute publishes their findings about the presidential elections in Georgia
29 November, 2018
National democratic institute publishes their findings about the presidential elections in Georgia
A delegation of the National Democratic Institute, which included observers from five countries, analyzed the election process. The delegation found that the election day proceeded in a largely orderly and calm manner. However, there were sporadic, but serious, incidents of multiple voting and manipulation of the count, both directly observed by NDI monitors.

The period ahead of the runoff was divisive and marked by violence and intimidation, reads the statement of the delegation. The campaign rhetoric grew more aggressive and hostile
between the two rounds, with messages of fear and threats of instability. The election lacked constructive debate on ideas, values, or visions for the presidency.

A constructive debate was lacking during the whole election process

Instead, election discourse, fueled by the main media broadcasters, intended to divide voters to extremes, depicting a decision between “nine bloody years of Saakashvili,” a reference to the former Georgian president, or “corrupt, inept rule of a billionaire oligarch,” referring to former prime minister and party chair Bidzina Ivanishvili. This left many Georgians, who dislike either extreme image, feeling politically dispossessed.
Banners defaming the opponent were daily fare during the presidential elections

Read more: Welcome to the presidential election circus in Georgia

While Georgian Dream leaders became the literal face of the Zourabichvili campaign, many billboards featuring photos of Ivanishvili and other party leaders, Zourabichvili became less visible. At the same time, Saakashvili loomed large over the campaign, making daily media appearances and statements. It should be noted that Saakashvili, who is not a citizen of Georgia, is prohibited from campaigning.

Unprecedented case of vote buying

The report of the delegation stresses one event that took place only days ahead of the Election Day, the prime minister announced that approximately 600,000 people would have their loans forgiven, with the costs reportedly covered by the Cartu Foundation, established by Ivanishvili. There is a lack of clarity or transparency about aspects of the arrangement, and little is known about the decision process or finances of the foundation.

Read more: Unprecedented move by Cartu Group to nullify debts for 600 000 Georgian citizens

Several NGOs and other observers to state that the electoral purposes of the announcement were clear and thus represented an unprecedented case of vote buying. But this was no isolated case. Immediately following the first round of the election, government officials and GD leaders made almost daily announcements of state projects and promises of social spending.
Prime Minister Bakhtadze announcing the debt cancellation for 600 000 citizens

According to the election code, the implementation of public projects or programs, or increases in welfare benefits, within 60 days of an election is prohibited unless allocated within the state budget prior to the 60-day period.

Several violent disorders were reported

The most serious incident in respect of used violence was the October 30 beating in Akhalkalaki of four UNM activists, who were hospitalized with serious injuries for several days. On the other side, Zourabichvili publicly reported that she and her family had received threats of violence against them via voice and text messages.

Furthermore, the delegation criticizes that the second runoff was held on a Wednesday. Several NGOs as well as opposition parties raised concerns that it would be difficult for Georgians living abroad to participate on a weekday. Also, a day might not be sufficient for some voters in Georgia to travel to their place of registration.

In its report the delegation offered a number of recommendations ahead of the 2020 parliamentary elections,

Related stories:

Welcome to the presidential election circus in Georgia

Unprecedented move by Cartu Group to nullify debts for 600 000 Georgian citizens

International media about the runoff presidential elections in Georgia

Other Stories
Representatives of diplomatic corps arrive in Gugutiantkari
Representatives of the diplomatic corps and the Government of Georgia are in the outskirts of the Gugutiantkari village of Gori municipality,
US State Department condemns Russian occupation of Georgia’s territories
The US state department has issued a statement condemning Russian occupation of Georgian territories – Abkhazia and Tskhinvali Region.
What went wrong in the 2008 August War? – Mikheil Saakashvili recalls
Today Georgia marks 11 years since the 2008 August War. After 11 years, there still are many unanswered questions.
After 11 years, Georgia commemorates the August War
It has been 11 years since the 2008 August War in Georgia. Officials and different politicians once again commemorated the date and made statements about the ongoing occupation of Georgia’s territories by Russia.
International Republican Institute’s (IRI) Center publishes fresh survey
A new nationwide public opinion survey of Georgian citizens by the International Republican Institute’s (IRI) Center for Insights in Survey Research
First comments made after Strasbourg Court’s decision over Rustavi 2
Rustavi 2 TV shareholder Kibar Khalvashi made first comment about the Strasbourg Court’s decision over Rustavi 2.
Bidzina Ivanishvili: "Who want closure of Russian market, are Georgia’s enemies"
Those, who tell-tale that we must replace the Russian market by the European and Ukrainian ones, are absolutely ignorant and uneducated,
Why Georgia is changing the mixed electoral system in favor of the proportional?
The Chairman of the Parliament Archil Talakvadze explained why Georgia has to change its mixed electoral system in favor of the proportional.
Why was the Ambassador of Georgia summoned to Azerbaijan's Foreign Ministry - what does Azeri media say?
Azeri media has released information about the ambassador of Georgia being called at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Azerbaijan.
Georgian side denies accusations against the Azeri border guards
Georgian citizens provoked an incident against Shamkir border group of Border Troops of the State Border Service of Azerbaijan (SBS)
Donald Tusk: "The collapse of the Soviet Union was very positive"
I want to say loudly from this tribune - the collapse of the Soviet Union was very positive, - Donald Tusk,
Donald Tusk reads a quote from Vazha Pshavela’s letter in Georgian
President of the Council of Europe Donald Tusk read a quote from Georgian writer
Economist: “An unwelcome Russian visitor has helped to revive an old antagonism”
Economist has recently published an article reviewing the recent events taking place in Georgia.
Russian Duma supports sanctions against Georgia, President Putin opposes
The Russian Duma supported sanctions against Georgia.
Prosecutor: Individuals planned to overthrow the state government
On the night of 20th of June, 2019, individuals were planned to violently overthrow the state government through uprising,
Court releases Nika Melia on GEL 30, 000 bail
The Tbilisi City Court sentenced Nika Melia to GEL 30, 000 bail at today’s court hearing.
Parliament suspends Nika Melia's MP's immunity
Nika Melia, the member of the opposition “United National Movement” party, has arrived at Tbilisi City Court.
"Russian Church blackmails Georgian Patriarchate" - Claims Ukraine's Rada member
Victor Yelenskyj was the head of the Ukrainian delegation at that fateful Interparliamentary Ortho­dox Assembly in Tbilisi that sparked the protests still ongoing to this day.
What the Protests in Tbilisi Mean for Relations with Russia
The protests in the center of Tbilisi over the Russian MP’s presence in Georgian parliament caused a nation-wide outburst against the ruling Georgian Dream party and Russia.
Government agrees to one of the protesters demands: Proportional Elections in 2020
The government has agreed to hold proportional parliamentary elections in Georgia in 2020.
Russia bans flights to Georgia from July 8
Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a decree yesterday prohibiting Russian airlines from carrying Russian citizens to Georgia from July 8.
Zakaria Kutsnashvili renounces his MP mandate
Zakaria Kutsnashvili, who was the head of the Georgian delegation in the Inter-parliamentary Session on Orthodoxy, has renounced his MP mandate.
Police use teargas, rubber bullets against protesters, says Human Rights Watch
Riot police in Tbilisi fired rubber bullets and used teargas without warning against thousands of nonviolent protesters
Russian lawmaker demands “official apology” from Tbilisi
Tbilisi should give its formal apology to Russia for the provocations against Russian delegates in the Inter-parliamentary Assembly on Orthodoxy,
Georgian police used teargas, rubber Bullets and water cannon against protesters
Police in Georgia used tear gas, rubber bullets and water cannon to stop protesters entering the country’s parliament on Friday.
GEL Exchange Rate
Other Stories
On 26 May, Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, joined celebrations in the Georgian capital of Tbilisi
Violation of Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity by Assad regime has been strictly criticized
Exactly one year ago, Georgia was granted visa-free travel with the European Union.
Georgia’s ex-president president Mikheil Saakashvili's supporters managed to free detained Mikheil Saakashvili in the center of Kiev.
The US Ambassador to Georgia Ian Kelly congratulates Georgia on Independence Day.
The regulations on the introduction of visa-free travel for citizens of Georgia have been officially signed in Brussels.
The entire Georgia is involved in Secret Santa game, which means that people are sending gifts to each other secretly
The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia is taking part in NATO Ministerial underway in Brussels, Belgium.
A special squad has been mobilized at the 48th polling station in Marneuli, Kvemo Kartli region.
Two politicians in Georgia have come to blows during a live TV debate ahead of the country’s parliamentary elections, Euronews reports.
GEL Exchange
August 2019
Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
1 2 3 4
5 6 7 8 9 10 11
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
26 27 28 29 30 31