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President Welcomes Proposal to Launch Group on Drafting Constitutional Amendments
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 19 Oct.'16 / 16:11

President’s office has welcomed PM Giorgi Kvirikashvili’s proposal to establish a group that would elaborate package of constitutional amendments through broad public involvement and without any haste.

Chief of president’s administration, Giorgi Abashishvili, said that “spirit” in which this proposal was made will “significantly contribute to ending speculation and removing question marks over the issue.”

PM Kvirikashvili, whose ruling GDDG party will gain three-fourths super-majority in the 150-member parliament if it wins at least 46 MP seats in the second round of elections on October 30, made the proposal when responding to concerns over ruling party winning constitutional majority; he said that such concerns were “unhealthy speculation”.

The chief of presidents administration said that the presidency “fully shares the view that the group”, which will be working on drafting constitutional amendments, “should have a very high legitimacy.”

“Therefore, the President, as head of the state… who is not a member of any political party, is ready to establish such working group, co-chaired by the President, Prime Minister and Speaker of Parliament,” Abashishvili said. “We are ready to launch consultations over structure and procedures of such a working group.”

“At the same time, it is important to take into consideration experience of previous constitutional commission in order to prevent the new working group from becoming as inefficient as the previous one,” he said, referring to the state commission on constitutional amendments, which was launched in late 2013, but failed to come up with final draft as some major parties showed little interest in its work.

That previous commission was chaired by speaker of outgoing parliament, Davit Usupashvili, who was saying back then that the existing constitution had “serious shortcomings”, but he was in favor of “improving” the existing model rather than completely replacing it with a new one.

Although after the October 8 parliamentary elections some members from the ruling party said that scrapping direct election of president might also be part of the possible constitutional amendments, GDDG ruling party has said since then for number of times that it has no “pre-prepared decisions” over specific clauses of the constitution.

The only issue over which the ruling GDDG party made a clear-cut commitment ahead of the October 8 parliamentary elections in respect of constitutional amendment was a pledge to define marriage in the constitution as union of a man and a woman.

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