Georgia

Electronic voting to be held in Parliamentary polls, 2024; says Georgian Ruling party

Tbilisi: The ruling Georgian Dream party has been planning to introduce a bill to electronically conduct the upcoming parliamentary elections in 2024 in all the cities and large settlements, stated the chairman of the party, Irakli Kobakhidze, on Tuesday.

“Electronic voting will definitely solidify the public’s confidence in vote counting, eliminate the problem of imbalances in election procedures, put an end to speculation about so-called carousels, and ensure that the votes of more than 70 per cent of voters are counted and announced as soon as the voting process ends. Further, it will eliminate exit polls and parallel counting of votes, problems such as forgery,” said Kobakhidze.

The amendment of the Election Code is one of the 12 recommendations that have set up the European Union in June for Georgia to receive its membership candidate status. 

The working group would be developing a package of draft laws in the upcoming days, as per the recommendations of OSCE/ODIHR and the topics that have been discussed with the political parties and civil representatives in the working group.

Kobakhidze further said that the initiative would soon be presented as a draft law which would then be discussed and consulted over the matters with the Government of Georgia, election authorities and the experts in this particular aspect. 

Only after that the practical process of the initiative shall proceed towards equipping the polling stations with voting devices.

The electronic systems had earlier been used during elections at several polling stations in Georgia. These include the 2020 parliamentary elections in Tbilisi, in Krtsanisi district and various election precincts in Batumi in 2021.

 

Zurab Kvaratskhelia

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