Parliament Speaker Comments on Intra-Party Dispute, Warns Against Party Discipline Violations
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 12 Apr.'18 / 18:39

Irakli Kobakhidze speaking to reporters, April 12, 2018. Photo:

Parliament Speaker Irakli Kobakhidze commented on the ongoing dispute in the ruling party, warning against party discipline violations and announcing changes in the governing bodies of the Georgian Dream-Democratic Georgia party.

Speaking at the party headquarters today, Kobakhidze reiterated that there were “few people in the ruling team,” who “made mistakes,” but stressed that the overall “spirit” in the majority group was positive. “There are many MPs - more than 100 MPs - who are correctly assessing the developments.” 

“Again, certain mistakes have been made, but there is a potential for resolving the relations with these MPs as well,” Kobakhidze added. For that to happen, “certain preconditions” will be applied to these lawmakers, according to the Parliament Speaker.

“We will have preconditions when we resume talks with these persons, and we will be ready to continue cooperation based on these preconditions,” Kobakhdize also noted. “The preconditions are simple, party discipline has been breached, insulting a teammate is one of the examples, for instance, so the case needs to be discussed and assessed [appropriately].” 

“If a lawmaker does not comply with these preconditions, respective processes will follow,” Kobakhidze added, apparently referring to dismissal procedures. He, however, stressed that the purpose was not to “judge” the MPs, but to “prevent” such incidents from reoccurring in the future.

Irakli Kobakhidze specified that the majority group had agreed at its meeting on Tuesday that “concrete rules, as well as response mechanisms,” would be elaborated. “Such rules exist in every democratic society, in every democratic party,” he noted.

Irakli Kobakhidze, who serves as the executive secretary of the Georgian Dream-Democratic Georgia party, spoke on the upcoming party convention as well, saying changes would tentatively be made to the revision commission and the political council. Kobakhidze, however, did not specify whether it would apply to Gedevan Popkhadze, who is also a member of the 21-member political council.

Speaking to reporters on April 12, Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili said divergence of opinions was natural in the majority group, but added that he “categorically” ruled out the possibility of its disintegration.

“Considering the completely different level of democracy that our country has reached, expectations for an old-fashioned majority group, is absolutely unjustified and outdated,” he said. The Prime Minister, however, added that it was “desirable” to keep these disagreements out of the public eye.

Kvirikashvili also stressed that there were no “groups of my own or of others” in the Parliament, and called on the MPs, “who are referring to my name when justifying their positions, to stop doing so, since our unity is important not only for the Georgian Dream party, but our stability is also one of our government’s greatest achievements and nothing should jeopardize it.”

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