TBILISI, DFWatch–Parliament is ready to listen to the president’s annual address to the nation, but the president may not show up.
Pavle Kublashvili from President Saakashvili’s United National Movement party says that the annual address has not been scheduled.
“I don’t know when the president will go to parliament. This issue is not on the schedule. He may go, but he doesn’t have this obligation anymore,” Interpressnews quoted him saying from Kutaisi, the second city and location of parliament.
The constitution says the president must present an annual report to the parliament. In 2013, the address was planned to take place on February 8, but the ruling coalition postponed it because of a debate at the time about amending the constitution.
But Saakashvili didn’t wait for the constitutional amendments debate to be finished. He announced that he would hold the speeck in the National Library in Tbilisi. Before it started there was a street clash outside, as former political prisoners and supporters of the coalition had a scuffle with members of the UNM and its supporters. The violence resulted in several people being injured, including Chiora Taktakishvili, a woman MP from the UNM. Later Saakashvili held his address from his residence in Avlabari.
Speaker of Parliament Davit Usupashvili on Monday said that parliament’s invitation to the president is still in force and that he may still show, but if he doesn’t, he will probably have to explain the reasons.
“We will properly meet him and host him, listen to him and ask him to listen to us too,” he said.