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Georgian Dream, Opposition Name Candidates for Snap Mayoral Elections  

Georgia will hold snap mayoral elections in five municipalities – Kutaisi, Terjola, Kharagauli, Oni and Kaspi, along with the general elections, scheduled for October 31. The ruling Georgian Dream party has already named the mayoral candidates in all five municipalities. Several opposition parties also did the same, but the process is still underway.

Below is the list of already presented candidates in the five municipalities

Kutaisi, in the western Imereti region  

  • Georgian Dream – Ioseb Khakhaleishvili, first deputy governor of Imereti
  • United National Movement – Grigol Shushania, member of Kutaisi Sakrebulo
  • European Georgia – Amiran Dzotsenidze, member of Kutaisi Sakrebulo
  • Free Georgia – Gaga Gogrichiani.

Terjola, in Imereti region

  • Georgian Dream – Lasha Gogiashvili, acting mayor of Terjola
  • European Georgia – Rolandi Meskhi

Kharagauli, in Imereti region

  • Georgian Dream – MP Koba Lursmanashvili
  • National Movement – Tornike Avalishvili, member of Kharagauli Sakrebulo

Oni, in western Racha-Lechkhumi-Kvemo Svaneti region 

  • Georgian Dream – Davit Chikvaidze, acting mayor of Oni
  • National Movement – Nodar Burdiladze, member of Oni Sakrebulo

Kaspi, in east-central Shida Kartli region

  • Georgian Dream – Vakhtang Maisuradze, head of the Department of Finance and Logistics at State Audit Office
  • National Movement – Nugzar Noniashvili, head of Kaspi regional office
  • European Georgia – Giorgi Khelashvili

The mayoral positions in five cities became vacant following a pre-term resignation of five mayors. Mayor of Kaspi, Manuchar Merebashvili resigned on March 11; later on April 1, Mayor of Terjola, Bondo Sopromadze also resigned; he was followed by Mayor of Oni, Emzar Sabanadze who resigned on April 5; Kutaisi Mayor Giorgi Chigvaria and Kharagauli Mayor Nikoloz Pruidze also resigned on April 8 and July 13, respectively.

Batumi Mayor Lasha Komakhidze resigned from the post on July 16. Unlike the mentioned five municipalities, however, no snap elections will be held in Batumi; instead, the new mayor will be elected during the 2021 local elections. According to the Election Code of Georgia, if powers of a Mayor are terminated during the 15 February – 15 July period, snap elections shall be held in October of the same year, while the resignation during 15 July – 15 February period, results in snap elections to be held in the nearest May. As the next year is the self-government election year, however, the new mayor should be elected through the planned local elections.

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