The National Democratic Institute (NDI) has offered recommendations ahead of the October 2 municipal elections to ‘help the country’ maintain its 30-year progress and leadership in the region for its commitment to Euro-Atlantic values.
The recommendations come on the heels of a series of online, high-level meetings of NDI top figures, including its chair Madeleine Albright, with Georgian political parties, government officials, civil society and local media representatives.
The recommendations say that all stakeholders should respect the rights of election observers and media organisations to conduct their oversight functions without harassment or obstruction.
NDI says that authorities should conduct a ‘swift, thorough, and unbiased investigation’ into and ‘timely prosecution’ of alleged cases of violence, intimidation, and vote buying.
NDI says that a ‘protracted political crisis’ and recent attacks on civil society and media raised concerns among the Georgian public and international community about the Georgian government’s continued commitment to a democratic, Euro-Atlantic path.
It said that the upcoming elections provide an opportunity for Georgia’s political leaders to demonstrate their commitment to the democratic path by adhering to democratic principles and focusing on the political and economic priorities of its citizens.