On 4 October the Council of Europe Office in Georgia presented a research on Election Dispute Resolution in Georgia, prepared by Council of Europe consultants.
Simplifying election dispute resolution procedures, eliminating restrictions on legal standing and shortcomings related to dismissal of cases on formal grounds – are all among longstanding recommendations of international organisations. The aim of the presented research was to provide an in-depth analysis of the shortcomings in the existing legal framework as well as the current practice in adjudication of electoral matters both within the Election Administration and the Georgian judiciary.
The paper analyses over 1000 complaints filed with the Election Administration and, up to 140 judgments made by courts during the 2016, 2017, and 2018 general elections (including the run-offs), as well as OSCE Observation mission reports and domestic watchdog reports in an attempt to thematically study the dispute resolution practices and challenges. The paper includes Council of Europe consultants’ recommendations on how the election dispute resolution process could be improved.
The presentation audience included Parliament representatives, Central Election Commission members, political parties, civil society, and international community. The presentation of the research was followed by a lively discussion that enabled electoral stakeholders to exchange views on how existing challenges could be overcome in the most effective and timely manner.
Representatives of the civil society organisations stated that the research may serve as a roadmap for the legislature, particularly in the context of the ongoing electoral legislation reform.
The research was prepared and presented within the frame of the Council of Europe project “Reform of the Electoral Practice in Georgia”.