Davit Bakradze, who has served as the opposition European Georgia party chair since May 2017, said today he will not seek reelection as the party chairman during spring congress, after its showing of poor results in the October parliamentary elections.
Bakradze, the former Parliament Speaker, cited the “need for renewal” of the party, noted, however, that he will neither leave the opposition nor will he consider entering the new Parliament “in this circumstance.”
“[Opposition’s parliamentary] boycott and all of the demands remain in force,” he said.
Following Bakradze, European Georgia’s Secretary-General, former Tbilisi Mayor Gigi Ugulava spoke to journalists, saying he will not run for his post at the upcoming party congress either. Ugulava said he will remain in the party in case of its renewal.
On the other hand, Giga Bokeria, the party’s political council chairman, and former Head of the Georgian National Security Council, said at the same briefing that while he respects Bakradze’s and Ugulava’s decisions, he does not reckon “this is the right time for [the party’s] leaders to step down.” “I plan to remain active in politics,” Bokeria added.
Earlier today, another senior member of European Georgia, Zurab Tchiaberashvili, another ex-Tbilisi Mayor and former Health Minister, also unveiled his decision to quit the party.
Prior to today’s announcements, Elene Khoshtaria was the first to quit European Georgia after the October elections. Khoshtaria announced on December 28 that she intended to establish a new political platform.
The European Georgia party split from the United National Movement, the party of ex-President Mikheil Saakashvili, in early 2017, following the 2016 parliamentary elections. The party participated in October 31, 2020, parliamentary elections independently for the first time and garnered 3.79%, that is five parliamentary mandates, lagging far behind the ruling Georgian Dream party and the UNM.