Parliament approves Code of Conduct for Political Parties in Election Period

Eighty- seven lawmakers supported the new Code of Conduct for Political Parties in Election Period. Photo by, 23 Jun 2016 - 11:36, Tbilisi,Georgia

The majority of Georgian lawmakers approved the new Code of Conduct for Political Parties in Election Period – a document that specifies the obligatory rules of behaviour for election subjects in the pre-election and election periods for Georgia’s Parliamentary Election, scheduled for October 8.

Seven parliamentary factions initiated the project, which was voted on and supported by 87 lawmakers out of the 150-seat legislative body. Opposition United National Movement (UNM) did not participate in the vote at yesterday’s plenary session. 

UNM has boycotted all Parliament sessions since the end of last month and demanded a complete investigation of the May 22 by-election clash in Georgia’s western Zugdidi Municipality. 

The seven parties who jointly initiated the new election Code of Conduct – Free Democrats, Georgian-Dream Democratic Georgia, Republicans, Georgian Dream-Industrials, Georgian Dream Conservatives and National Forum – hoped UNM would also join the initiative. 

The Code of Conduct for Political Parties in Election Period states: 

  • Political subjects are obliged to intensively cooperate with international observing missions, both in the pre-election and election periods, and provide them with all necessary information for them to draft their assessments about the pre-election and election situations in Georgia; 
  • The Code strongly prohibits politicisation of state structures and state servants, police and  use of administrative resources; 
  • The Government must prevent any violations, including towards the media. For each party, the media is obliged to provide fair and balanced coverage of the pre-election and election processes. 
The document was adopted after large-scaled consensus. UNM did not participate in the vote but we have had communication with them and we hope they will also join the Code,” Parliament Speaker David Usupashvili said. 

Usupashvili stressed the Code was a vital tool to ensure the conducting of fair and transparent elections. 

Rivalry between political parties mustn’t disturb normal election procedures,” Usupashvili added. 

Three days ago Georgia’s Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili spoke about the importance of adopting of the new Code of Conduct, which had been created with the input of several different political players.