Elections '12-'13, News

Saakashvili signs constitutional amendment

by | Mar 27, 2013

Tbilisi, DFWatch – President Mikheil Saakashvili has signed the constitutional amendment which reduces his power, and it will be enforced as soon as it is published on Georgia’s legislative website.

Speaker of Parliament Davit Usupashvili today told journalists that president has signed the document and new regulations will come to force since tomorrow.

“The president will not be tempted to use incorrect mechanisms,” he said. “The government will be able to work in more peaceful situation and what’s important, no one will anymore be able to change the government without election.”

February 25, parliament adopted constitution amendment at the third hearing with 114 votes against 0. It took away a provision which until now has allowed the president to handpick a caretaker government in the event that he dismisses the government and announces a snap election for parliament. He will still be empowered to call for an election, but not less than six months before or after a parliamentary or presidential election, leaving him a window of ten days in April to do this. But after the amendment, the Georgian Dream coalition would continue to govern in a caretaker role, and would be the ones to conduct the election.

The issue of who is in government during the actual election process is touchy because of a history of violations in previous elections.

March 26, EU’s foreign policy spokesperson Catherine Ashton and the union’s enlargement expert Stefan Fule published a short letter welcoming the adoption ‘of an important amendment of Georgia’s constitution.’

“The constitutional amendment, which confirms the role of the democratically-elected parliament in approving the appointment of a new government, consolidates Georgia’s democracy and sets an important precedent for co-operation between all parties in Georgian politics,” the letter reads.



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