Georgian Parliament approves new Constitution

The draft amendments to the Georgian Constitution were approved by 109 parliament members, the website of the country's parliament said.

The signatures submitted by deputies will be handed over to the committee on procedural issues and regulations of the Georgian parliament to verify their authenticity. After that, the parliament will adopt a resolution 'On the establishment of a commission to organize public consideration of the constitutional amendments', the Parliament Chairman Irakli Kobakhidze explained.

He noted that the commission will conduct a general review of the amendments in the regions of the country within a month, Sputnik Georgia reports.

In June, the amendments will be returned to the parliament for consideration by the committees. According to preliminary information, in the first two readings the draft amendments will be adopted in the summer, and in the third reading - in the autumn.

The amendments include abolishing direct elections for president and transition from a presidential to a parliamentary system. The law will come into force after the presidential elections in 2018.

The head of the Institute of Management Strategy, Petre Mamradze, speaking to a correspondent of Vestnik Kavkaza, noted that the expected stage of public discussion on the new draft Constitution will not arouse widespread interest among the population. "Our population is quite indifferent about the Constitution. Everyone is inclined to believe that our country is governed not by the letter of the law, but by the will of certain people. In Georgia, they even vote for personality, not for programs. Therefore, we should not wait for an active response from the masses to the draft amendments of a Constitution," the political scientist believes.

The head of the Center for Global Studies, Nana Devdariani, in turn, drew attention to the fact that all the parties except the Georgian dream boycotted the session of the Constitutional Commission at the final stage, since none of their proposals were taken into account. "Experts believe that it can lead to protest actions. While the ruling party does not intend to make any compromises, which creates a very unpleasant situation, because the Constitution should be the product of a consensus of all political and social forces," she stressed.

The expert also expects that in general the population will show indifference to public discussions of the draft of the new Constitution. "These issues are of interest only to the most active representatives of the public who express the opinion of people. Now almost all of them are very dissatisfied with the draft of the new Constitution," Nana Devdariani said.

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