President supports creation of working group on constitutional amendments

President said the Prime Minister’s initiative about a working group on constitutional amendments was welcomed. Photo by President’s press office., 19 Oct 2016 - 14:59, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgia’s President welcomed the Prime Minister’s initiative to establish a working group about constitutional amendments and said he was ready to create such a group. 

The group set up by President Giorgi Margvelashvili would be co-chaired by him, Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili and  Parliament Speaker David Usupashvili, said head of the President’s Administration Giorgi Abashishvili.

If all the officials were ready, consultations over the group’s structure and working rules can begin today,” Abashishvili said. 

Abashishvili noted the Prime Minsiter's idea to create a working group was a positive step as it would "end speculation over constitutional issues and remove many question marks” about Parliamentary majority. 

Several opposition parties believed if the ruling Georgian Dream-Democratic Georgia (GDDG) party gained constitutional majority of at least 100 members in the 150-seat Parliament, the ruling team will enact any changes to the Constitution it wishes.  

Kvirikashvili stated this morning that he supported a working group within the new Parliament that would work on constitutional amendments with the involvement of all interested sides, which would make the Constitution really "European and democratic.” 

Ruling party Executive Secretary Irakli Kobakhidze said a range of issues needed to be addressed in the country's Constitution. Photo by Georgian Dream-Democratic Georgia press office. 

In October 2010, under the previous United National Movement leadership, Parliament passed amendments to the Constitution which significantly reduced the powers of the President in favour of the Prime Minister and the Government.

Executive Secretary of the ruling Georgia Dream-Democratic Georgia party, Irakli Kobakhidze, said there were a range of issues that needed to be specified in the Constitution for Georgia to fully move to the new, Parliamentary model. 

The Parliament that was mainly composed of the United National Movement lawmakers in 2010 adopted changes to the Constitution based on the interests of then-president Mikheil Saakashvili [who wished to become Prime Minister].   
Through the changes the country moved to the Parliamentary ruling model from the Presidential, but there were multiple issues that needed to be clearly explained,” Kobakhidze said. 

Kobakhidze said it was importance that any amendments to the Constitution happened through the participation of all political actors, local and foreign experts and all others interested in the issue.