სახელმწიფო საკონსტიტუციო კომისია
The Legal Issues Committee considered the draft Constitutional Changes and the draft Constitutional Law on Autonomous Republic of Adjara
The Speaker, Irakli Kobakhidze introduced the draft Constitutional Changes and the draft Constitutional Law on Autonomous Republic of Adjara with the III reading.
He emphasized the editorial and technical changes introduced after the II reading. After the consultations with the Venice Commission, the Parliament will initiate the new draft with amendments to the Constitutional changes concerning the bonus system and electoral blocs. “We had the consultations with Venice Commission. They expressed some remarks of non-editorial nature and we expressed our commitment to introduce respective amendments to the draft, which requires initiation of the new Constitutional law on two main issues: withdrawal of bonuses from the text and maintenance of the blocs in single manner. Both amendments are of non-editorial nature”.
The Speaker noted that Rules of Procedure shall be strictly adhered to upon consideration. “Adherence to the principles and the Rules of Procedure is necessary for us. We remember from the past when non-editorial changes used to be introduced to the Constitutional law within the III reading. If we review the changes of 2010, we will see that numerous non-editorial changes have been introduced to the Constitution upon III reading, which is unacceptable”.
After the changes, the Constitution will be the model in legal terms. “The current Constitution is imperfect, including in legal terms. One of the achievements accompanying this process is that this document will be a real model in legal terms”.
He answered the questions of the opposition concerning postponement of the proportional system, return of the draft to the II reading, support of the society to the draft and terms of adoption of the changes. He noted that despite various attempts of the ruling party, it was the opposition due to which the proportional system cannot be applied in 2020. “We have many times expressed our position during the Constitutional Commission activity. We have reiterated that the positions of 116 MPs on the proportional system were reconciled. We stated that the ruling party leadership has made the decision on this system to serve the solid basis for further discussions. I believe that this process would succeed if the opposition provided the consecutive approach. When the Commission developed the changes, they provided that the proportional system should enact in 2020 but the opposition left the Commission. The Venice Commission opinion provides that the proportional system was the key to consensus. In fact, it was not. We all saw that when the document provided the proportional system enactment in 2020, the opposition left he Commission and it was not understandable.
Moreover, later we started another round of consultations and asked them to provide the list of the issues in case of reflection of which in the document they would support the changes. No list was provided. It put the process into the dead-end and made consensus impossible. It was the approach of the opposition conditioning postponement of the proportional system”.
Speaking about the public support to the changes, the Speaker noted that it is often said that the changes are supported by one party solely – Georgian Dream. “The President along with 20 parties offered so-called document of consent – it is the document without support of 117 MPs out of 150, without support of 5 Parliamentary parties out of 8 and the document communicated by the people”.
Oppositions’ accusation state that adoption of the changes is accelerated. “They state, the document is accelerated which was developed during 8 months. We worked hard in 24-hour regime to develop improved document. Meanwhile, the President and 20 parties offer the improved document developed in one day. The society sees the truth. Our process was conducted in the form facilitating to continuation of the dialogue, though the opposition took another way”.
He noted that the promise of the ruling party to consider the Venice Commission recommendations is fulfilled. The remarks by the President concern: Presidential election, Presidential authorities, annulment of Security Council, re-regulation of defense issues, re-regulation of Government issues, threshold and annulment of blocs. The only issue common for the document and Venice Commission opinion is the date of proportional system enactment.
“The Venice Commission recommendations are due shared by us and the document complies with the aspiration reflected in the initial remarks of the Venice Commission”. The new document provides none of the Articles improving the political positions of the ruling party. As he stated, adoption of new initiative will be possible in March, and tomorrow the Constitutional changes will be adopted with the III reading. “It will be a leap forward for development of our administration system”.
The draft ensures compliance of the Constitution with the fundamental legal principles and establishes improved Parliamentary administration system for long-term democratic development of the country, setting the legal guarantees for human rights and high standards of activity and independence of Constitutional agencies. The Committee supported the drafts.