Opposition Coalition Accuses CEC of Delaying Runoff Date Announcement

The opposition coalition led by the United National Movement claims the Central Election Commission (CEC) is delaying to schedule the date of the second round of presidential polls.

Giorgi Vashadze of the New Georgia party, who manages the presidential campaign of opposition candidate Grigol Vashadze, said at a press briefing on November 13 that the CEC is trying to “manipulate” with the issue, and does so “in agreement with the ruling party.”

The campaign manager said the Georgian Dream-Democratic Georgia wants to schedule the runoffs on a working day “to hinder many of our citizens living abroad from voting.”

Giorgi Vashadze then called on the election administration and the ruling party not to delay the runoff date announcement. “Instead of making absurd statements, it is better to set the date [quickly] – on Sunday as has been the practice,” he stated.

According to article 95 of the Election Code, presidential election can be held on any Sunday in October (first round of the 2018 election was held on Sunday, October 28).

Runoff date is regulated by article 105 of the Election Code, which stipulates that second round runoffs have to be held two weeks after the CEC publishes the final vote tally of the first round that is no later than 20 days after the Election Day (November 17, 2018).

This places the latest possible date of the runoff on December 1, 2018.

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