‘Parliamentary Runoffs’ Held in Abkhazia

Some 54.5% of around 67 thousand eligible voted in occupied Abkhazia on March 26 in the runoffs to elect the 35-member legislature for a five-year term, according to local media.

Out of 17 runoff races, candidates scored second-round victories in 16, while a repeat vote will be held in one single-mandate constituency in Sokhumi city within two months.

In the second round, none of the incumbent lawmakers — Batal Aiba, Raul Lolua, Almaskhan Bartsists, Natalie Smyr, Almaskhan Ardzinba, Astamur Tarba — managed to get re-elected.

Of the five candidates of the Amtsakhara party, allied with incumbent Abkhaz leader Aslan Bzhania, four clinched a seat, while one failed to.

In total, Amtsakhara has received five seats in the two rounds of voting. Neither of the four other parties contending managed to score a win.

Meanwhile, the trend of the domination of individual politicians, rather than parties, over the Abkhaz legislature has continued, as overall 28 independent candidates have won a seat on March 26 and 12.

There were overall 18 outgoing lawmakers contesting in the first round and the runoffs, of which only seven scored a victory — all in the first round.

A repeat vote will be held on May 14 in the town of Gudauta. Abkhaz authorities have not yet set an exact date for the district in Sokhumi, but the poll is set to be held within the next two months.

Elections in Abkhazia are considered illegitimate by Tbilisi, as well as the most of international community except Russia and the several states that recognize the independence of the occupied region.

Some 260,000 ethnic Georgians, that made the largest ethnic group in pre-war Abkhazia, remain uprooted from their homes.

Further, some 30,000 ethnic Georgians in the Abkhaz-controlled Gali district are not allowed to vote after being stripped of their Abkhaz passports in 2014 and 2017.

See below the list of lawmakers that scored a victory on March 27, as reported by Sokhumi-based Apsnypress news agency:


District  #1 (Sokhumi city)

  • Inar Gitsba — 1,287 votes

District  #2 (Sokhumi city)

  • Astamur Gerkhelia, Amtsakhara party — 1,024 votes

District #3 (Sokhumi city)

  • Narsou Salakaia — 1,215 votes

District  #4 (Sokhumi city)

  • Eric Rshtuni — 1,015 votes

District  #6 (Sokhumi city)

  • Dmitry Marshania — 1,763 votes

District  #7 (Sokhumi city)

  • Rashida Aiba — 1,213 votes

District  #13 (Gagra city)

  • Alkhas Bartsits — 2,109 votes

District  #15 (Otkhara)

  • Badrik Pilia — 1,130 votes

District #20 (Aatsi) 

  • Alisa Gularia, Amtsakhara party — 1,451 votes

District #21 (Akhali Atoni) 

  • Akhra Pachulia — 928 votes

District  #22 (Eshera)

  • Fazlibey Avidzba — 741 votes

District  #28 (Gupi) 

  • Demur Gogia — 922 votes

District  #29 (Chlou) 

  • Almas Akaba, Amtsakhara party — 1,038 votes

District  #32 (Ochamchire)

  • Batal Jopua — 1,189 votes

District  #33 (Tkvarcheli) 

  • Beslan Emurkhba, Amtsakhara party — 1,372 votes

District #34 (Tkvarcheli) 

  • German Kacharava — 854 votes

This post is also available in: ქართული (Georgian) Русский (Russian)


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