Parliament Urges President to Convoke Special Session
On 19 December, Speaker of Parliament Shalva Papuashvili urged President Salome Zurabishvili to convene a special parliamentary session on 22-23 December. Among other things, the Parliament intends to select a new Public Defender and the Chairperson of the Central Election Commission (CEC).
“Today I am appealing to the President to convene a special session. The topics on the agenda will include elections of the Public Defender, members of the High Council of Justice (HCoJ), chairperson and members of the Central Election Commission (CEC), and [discussing] a few draft laws which have to be adopted in the third hearing,” Speaker Papuashvili said.
“I hope factions will reach an agreement on candidates and we can select certain officials by qualified majority vote,” Speaker Papuashvili added.
Parliament ended its autumn session on 16 December without filling in a few key positions, including the Office of the Public Defender which has remained vacant since Nino Lomjaria completed her term on 9 December.
President Zurabishvili has yet to respond to the Parliament’s request.
Notably, one of the twelve recommendations by the European Union for Georgia’s EU candidacy emphasizes the importance of selecting an independent Public Defender. The EU recommends “ensure that an independent person is given preference in the process of nominating a new Public Defender (Ombudsperson) and that this process is conducted in a transparent manner; ensure the Office’s effective institutional independence.”
- 17/06/2022 – European Commission’s Memo Detailing Recommendations for Georgia
- 29/11/2022 – Georgian Dream, Opposition Continue Consultations on 8 Public Defender Candidates
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