Second round of Elections 2016: All you need to know

  • CEC chairperson said 1,440 representatives from 55 foreign observing missions will observe the elections. Photo by N.Alavidze/, 11 Oct 2016 - 12:38, Tbilisi,Georgia

On Saturday, October 8, Georgian citizens voted to elect the 150-seat Parliament of Georgia, 77 members through party lists and 73 in the majoritarian districts.

Parties must gain at least five percent of all votes to enter Parliament. According to current preliminary results, three parties managed to overcome this threshold.

Majoritarian candidates must gain at least 50 percent of all votes in their respective voting district in order to be able to enter Parliament. If no candidate gains at least a half of all votes, a second round of voting is held, where the two candidates with the highest number of previous votes compete.

There are 73 election districts in Georgia. After Saturday's vote Georgian Dream (GD) candidates won outright in 23 districts while a winner was not identified in the remaining 50 districts. This meant a second round of vote will be needed in 50 districts nationwide.

What if two candidates have the same number of votes in second round?

If two candidates gain the same number of votes in the runoff elections, the winner is the candidate who gained the most votes in the initial election on Saturday, October 8. 

What if a candidate refuses to participate in the second round?

Georgia’s Central Election Commission (CEC) spokesperson Ana Mikeladze said if a candidate refused to participate in the second round, their name would still remain on election ballots, meaning people could still vote for them.

If this candidate wins the second round, a by-election will be held to fill the vacant majoritarian seat in Parliament.

However, local non-governmental organisations disliked this rule and said it was a waste of resources and time. They believed it would be better if the unwilling candidate was not named on the ballot paper and instead, name the person with the next highest number of votes to replace them in the second round.

The NGOs believed the section of Georgia’s Election Code that described the rules surrounding second round voting can be interpreted the way they suggested.

When will the runoff take place?

Legislation states November 2 is the latest date when the second round of voting can take place.