The Prosecutorial Council has unanimously selected Shalva Tadumadze, head of the Government’s Administration, as the candidate for new Chief Prosecutor.
Two candidates – Nino Gogniashvili and Shalva Tadumadze – competed for the position. The third candidate, Shalva Shavgulidze of the Free Democrats, who was nominated by the opposition European Georgia party, withdrew from race shortly before the interview session on July 11, citing lack of transparency in the process.
MP Otar Kakhidze of the European Georgia, who is a member of the fifteen-member Prosecutorial Council, quit the session as well, saying he asked for opening the interview process to live coverage, but the request was rejected by the Council.
Justice Minister Tea Tsulukiani, who chairs the Prosecutorial Council, attended the session yesterday, but did not participate in the interview and the voting process. Consequently, 12 Council members took part in the voting (MP Eka Beselia was absent as well), with Shalva Tadumadze garnering all votes.
Speaking after the voting, Tsulukiani stressed the selection process was open and inclusive. “I did not participate in the voting in order not to cast a shadow to the free choice of highly qualified persons,” she explained.
Tadumadze’s candidacy will now be submitted to the Government of Georgia. If ministers approve the nomination, the candidate will be presented to the Parliament, which will have to confirm the new Chief Prosecutor with a majority vote.
The Ministry of Justice launched public consultations on selecting the new Chief Prosecutor on June 4, a week after Irakli Shotadze’s resignation following mass demonstration at his office over the controversial Khorava street incident last December. The CSOs boycotted the process, calling for suspending it pending reforms in the appointment procedures.