Parliament suspends status of two opposition MPs

  • MPs Zurab Japaridze (L) and Mamuka Khazaradze requested the suspension of their status in early November of the year. Photo: RFE/RL., 16 Nov 2021 - 17:59, Tbilisi,Georgia

The Georgian parliament has suspended the MP status of Lelo party founder Mamuka Khazaradze and leader of the Girchi-More Freedom opposition party Zurab Japaridze earlier today with 79 votes in the 150-member state legislature, per their request. 

Both MPs submitted an official request to parliament to have their status terminated in early November in protest of what they claim were the ‘fabricated’ results of the recent municipal elections in October. 

They are demanding the annulment of the election results as well.

Girchi - More Freedom is a libertarian party founded by Japaridze.

Khazaradze entered politics back in 2019, shortly after he was charged with laundering 16.7 million USD along with another founder of TBC Bank, Badri Japaridze. 

Lelo for Georgia won four seats in parliament in the 2020 parliamentary elections. 

In the recent municipal elections Lelo candidates failed to win any of the mayoral constituencies as the GD candidates won 63 of the 64 constituencies, while the UNM  candidate won only one. 

Lelo received 2.71% of the vote in the proportional part of the race, came fourth after the GD, the UNM and the For Georgia parties.  

Currently 147 MPs remain in parliament as the state legislature also suspended the status for the head of the United National Movement opposition party, Nika Melia, in early October.