About Civil.ge
Eng | Geo | Rus
Last updated: 18:49 - 30 Jul.'16
RSS
Mobile
Twitter
Facebook
Saakashvili Comments on Ivanishvili
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 21 May.'12 / 02:44

  • 'In a competition big money vs. democracy, good things always win and that's gonna happen in Georgia'

President Saakashvili addresses Young Atlanticist Summit in Chicago, May 20. Photo: Georgian President’s administration

By amending constitution to allow leader of opposition coalition Georgian Dream, Bidzina Ivanishvili, to run in elections, the Georgian authorities have "undermined plot to de-legitimize" the October parliamentary elections, President Saakashvili said while addressing Young Atlanticist Summit in Chicago on May 20.

Asked, as an author of the question put it, "not such an easy question" about "termination of Bidzina Ivanishvili's citizenship", Saakashvili responded: "That's an easy one, a very easy question."

"There just was a change to the Georgian constitution where even if you are not a Georgian citizen and you are a European Union citizen you can run for anything," he said.

"Basically we undermined what was the plot to de-legitimize our elections," Saakashvili continued, "because, I think, what the enemies of the Georgian democracy want is Georgia to... look like the country that deprives its opposition election rights or some other things,"

"How many countries allow participation of non-citizens in presidential and parliamentary elections? We do and the reason why we do it is that we do not want anybody to undermine... the reality that Georgia is a democracy," he said. "That's what we basically did by this constitutional change."

To a followup question about Ivanishvili's entry into politics, Saakashvili responded: "We are free country. Even with big money resource or any other things anybody can take part in any electoral process - it's not an issue."

"What we'll do, we'll keep the framework intact. The framework is that people are equal under the law, one person is one vote no matter what are the resources behind that one person and ultimately I believe, that in any democracy, no matter  what you do, popular will will prevail. Whenever there is a competition - foreign menaces versus national development or big money versus democracy, I think ultimately good things always win and generally, I think, that's gonna happen in Georgia"

After French citizen Ivanishvili was refused in citizenship through naturalization and told by the authorities to seek regaining Georgian passport through a different procedures, in particular through applying for dual citizenship, a constitutional amendment was proposed allowing Ivanishvili to vote and be elected in Georgia without having Georgian citizenship.

According to this proposal, which has yet to be approved by the Parliament with its third and final reading, a Georgian-born citizen of EU-member state, who “has permanently lived in Georgia for last 5 years”, will be able to run in October parliamentary elections and presidential election next year. Ivanishvili says that such a constitutional amendment is "an absurd".

RELATED
Latest News
30 Jul.'16 18:49
Constitutional Court Judges in Public Row over High-Profile Cases
“It’s safe to say that the Constitutional Court is in crisis,” Parliament Speaker said.
29 Jul.'16 14:37
Geostat: 2.9% GDP Growth in H1’16
Real GDP grew 3.1% y/y in the second quarter of 2016, after 2.6% growth in the first quarter.
29 Jul.'16 13:35
Political Ratings in NDI-Commissioned Poll
More than third of likely voters were undecided, according to poll fielded more than three months before elections.
29 Jul.'16 10:21
Defense Minister, State Minister for Reconciliation Resign, Effective Aug.1
PM has yet to name new ministers for two cabinet posts, which will become vacant next week.
28 Jul.'16 18:45
Investigators Interview Constitutional Court Judges over Alleged Pressure
Constitutional Court chair met Chief Prosecutor on July 28, a day after meeting the Prime Minister.
27 Jul.'16 17:51
Hungary’s FM Visits Tbilisi, Says EU Should Grant Visa-Free Travel to Georgia ‘Immediately’
He also said Hungary wants Georgia “to be invited in NATO as soon as possible.”
27 Jul.'16 15:19
Central Bank Cuts Key Rate to 6.75%
The central bank said that the key rate “is expected to be cut to 6% in a mid-term period.”
27 Jul.'16 13:27
NDI-Commissioned Public Opinion Survey
The poll shows respondents’ attitudes towards broad range of issues, among them foreign policy.
26 Jul.'16 23:05
Tbilisi Says Local Man ‘Physically Assaulted by Occupying Troops’ at S.Ossetia Administrative Border
The incident occurred close to the village of Kirbali of Gori municipality, southeast of Tskhinvali.
26 Jul.'16 15:19
Addressing Georgian Diplomats, PM Speaks of Foreign Policy Priorities
Georgian diplomacy should be capable of being adapted to fast changing int’l situation, he said.

About Civil Georgia
Civil.Ge © 2001-2016, Daily News Online
Registered office: 2 Dolidze Str, 4-th Floor.
16