Temporary Parliament, Repeal of the Russian Law and More – the President Offers a Plan to the Parties

პრეზიდენტის ადმინისტრაცია

The President of Georgia offers the political parties the Georgian Charter, by signing which they undertake to fulfill the conditions stated in the document.

Salome Zurabishvili says that in order to fulfill this charter and restore trust, a new political reality must be created and “for this we need a different kind of unity, a different kind of parliament, a different kind of elections and a different kind of government”.

The President also explained what she meant by this sentence:

A different kind of unity – is being one without unity. Unity only and only around this charter and its implementation, i.e. around the European future. Consent around this charter does not require and does not imply a single list or any other form of necessary political associations. Political parties should decide for themselves, after signing this joint charter, what will be their electoral strategy and tactics. It doesn’t concern me anymore.

Different kind of elections – the current political conditions and electoral environment do not allow for ordinary elections to be held, where everyone will be given the opportunity to present their face, their program, their identity. Since in these elections we have to decide not who we vote for, but what we vote for, that is why these elections will actually be a popular referendum on whether we want Europe or not. And when we vote for any of the parties that signed the charter, we actually vote for the Georgian charter and the European future.

A different kind of parliament – it will be a parliament elected for a specific term and to implement a specific European plan. This parliament must fulfill its obligations under the charter, after that it will return the mandate to the voters and hold extraordinary parliamentary elections in a new, free environment. This short-term mandate insures many risks, including one that scares the electorate lest any power be tempted to stay in power indefinitely, as we have seen.

A different kind of government – it will be a completely new model of government. It will not be a government composed of political parties, but a government selected and distinguished by professionalism in society. The process of recruiting the government will be carried out in coordination with the president.

Salome Zurabishvili explained that the Georgian Charter implies agreement and condition on all the issues, the fulfillment of which is necessary not only for European integration, but also for the establishment of our country’s democracy and fair state.

“Perhaps, many people today cannot see the winning formula, cannot see to which force they should entrust these expectations. I know that many people do not believe in pre-election promises. To a large extent, politicians are mistrusted precisely because we have the kind of past we have. Nevertheless, it is not time to give in to nihilism, greed and individual political ambitions,” said the President.

According to her,  the Georgian people will make a decision through democratic elections, which will protect us from any destabilization and dangerous confrontation.

“A different opinion should be expressed at the polling station and not elsewhere and in any other form,” she added.

Salome Zurabishvili also said that she is aware of the responsibility to respond to great expectations.

“This plan is our peaceful solution and I take responsibility to protect this way of survival and return to Europe. At the same time, this plan will lead us to the good things that our strategic friend America has to offer. This means that we are returning to the foreign course declared and guaranteed by our constitution”.

What is Written in the Georgian Charter?

The Georgian Charter states that the document reflects the order and demand of society. In addition, according to the Charter, in its essence and spirit, it also serves to take the main steps that are of existential importance for the society today.

In addition, the steps that the signatories of this Charter commit themselves to take are also echoed by point 9 of the European Recommendation.

Here are the obligations that the Charter provides:

Cancellation of the Laws Harmful to the Country’s European Course

We will immediately repeal all laws that contradict the European Way and European recommendations. In particular, amendments to the Law “On Transparency of Foreign Influence”, i.e. the Russian Law, changes in the election code, the so-called eavesdropping and offshore laws and more.

We will also cancel politically motivated cases against demonstrators participating in the 2024 protest and amnesty will be granted.

Liberating and Restoring Trust in the Justice System

Liberating the Court

  • We will get rid of clan rule by checking the integrity of judges, the origin of undocumented property;
  • The inspection will concern all those judges whose politically motivated decisions have damaged trust in the court and damaged its reputation;
  • The inspection will concern all members of the Constitutional Court, the Supreme Council of Justice, the Supreme Court, the chairpersons of the Court of Appeal and the City Court;
  • The check will also apply to all new judges. New judges will be added to the court, which will eliminate the overcrowding of the court and violation of the deadlines for hearing cases;
  • The system of electronic distribution of cases in the court will be fully implemented in order to exclude political influences in the process of distribution of cases;
  • Judges will not be able to hold administrative positions for a second term;
  • We will strengthen the mandate of the jury court and extend its authority to cases of high public interest.

Fundamental Reform of the Supreme Council of Justice

The Supreme Council of Justice will be deprived of excessive powers, namely:

  • The right to disciplinary proceedings, which is a lever for prosecuting judges;
  • The right to elect chairpersons of administrative bodies;
  • The School of Justice will be independent from the Council;
  • The procedure for selecting judges of the Supreme Court will change: the council will examine candidates only according to the criteria established by the constitution, and submit a complete list to the parliament, which will select them.

In addition, members of the Supreme Council of Justice will be prohibited from:

  • Holding other administrative positions;
  • Option to be elected twice.

Important decisions in the Supreme Council of Justice will be influenced by non-judge members.

Other Priority Steps of Justice System Reforms

Prosecutor’s Office:

  • The Attorney General is elected by a high quorum and for one term only
  • The Prosecutor’s Council will be strengthened

State Security Service/Ministry of Internal Affairs

  • In order to deconcentrate power, a fundamental reform of the State Security Service and the Ministry of Internal Affairs will be carried out. Effective parliamentary control will be established on the activities of each of them, which will protect them from political influences.

Special Investigation Service:

  • We will strengthen and grant real independence to protect the rights of citizens in cases of violence committed by law enforcement officers.

Anti-corruption agency:

  • We will separate the executive from the government and give them real leverage. First of all, we will equip it with investigative powers on corruption cases.
  • The head of the agency will be elected by the Parliament of Georgia and they will be accountable to the Parliament.

The National Bank:

  • We will restore independence by increasing the number of board members and the balance between executive and non-executive members.
  • We exclude the possibility of making individual decisions.
  • The order made by the head of the National Bank, which contradicts Georgia’s international obligations, will be annulled.

Regulatory Bodies

  • We will free it from political influence and independent leaders will be appointed democratically.

Strengthening the Electoral System

Appropriate conditions will be created for holding fair and free elections:

The procedure for electing the chairman of the Election Administration of Georgia and staffing the Election Administration of Georgia will be improved, the threshold will be lowered, the possibility of creating blocs will be restored, the procedure for financing parties will be revised, and the diaspora will be given the opportunity to participate in the elections.

Creating a New Political Reality

We, the signatories of this charter, who will receive a mandate from the Georgian people in the elections of October 26, 2024, undertake and promise to fulfill the conditions written in this charter before the end of the first spring session, and upon completion, early parliamentary elections will be prepared and held in free and fair conditions.

Also, we pledge that the government, which will be responsible for the implementation of this action plan, will be nominated by the President of Georgia.