Ruling party, United National Movement (UNM), submitted its party list of 155 MP candidates to the Central Election Commission few hours before the deadline expired on September 1.
As it was announced earlier, the list, which includes 69 sitting lawmakers, is led by incumbent parliamentary speaker Davit Bakradze.
Bakradze is followed by majority leader in the outgoing Parliament, Petre Tsiskarishvili, and ex-state minister for Euro-Atlantic integration, Giorgi Baramidze, who is also running as ruling party’s majoritarian MP candidate in Batumi.
Tinatin Bokuchava, who was deputy head of the State Audit Office up to now, is fourth in the list, followed by ex-mayor of Kutaisi Giorgi Tevdoradze, who also runs as majoritarian MP candidate for Kutaisi, and an incumbent MP Chiora Taktakishvili, who now acts as ruling party’s spokesperson.
Incumbent Vice Speaker of Parliament and ruling party’s majoritarian MP candidate in Tbilisi’s Samgori single-mandate constituency, Mikheil Machavariani, is number seven in the list.
Next two candidates in the list are ex-deputy justice minister Giorgi Vashadze and ex-deputy chief prosecutor Davit Sakvarelidze; both are also majoritarian MP candidates in Tbilisi’s Isani and Krtsanisi single-mandate constituencies, respectively.
Number tenth in the list is Maia Sajaia, who served as a spokesperson for Summer Job, a state-funded short-term employment program for students.
Sajaia is the youngest candidate in the list; she is 21 years old.
Parliament passed a constitutional amendment this May reducing the minimum age for becoming an MP from 25 to 21.
There are two other candidates in the list whose nomination for MP was made possible after this constitutional amendment: Meri Kokaia, 22, who is number forty two in the list and Samira Ismailova (number thirty nine in the list), who will turn 22 on the election day, October 1.
Incumbent MP Giorgi Gabashvili is eleventh, followed by Zurab Japaridze, a columnist for Tbilisi-based Tabula magazine, who has recently launched a non-governmental organization Clean Politics, mainly targeting Bidzina Ivanishvili and his coalition Georgian Dream’s political finances.
Head of administration of the Tbilisi-based Ilia State University (ISU), Sergo Ratiani, is thirteenth in the list.
Sculptor Giorgi Ochiauri, 85, is number fourteenth; his daughter, Khatuna Ochiauri, is an incumbent ruling party lawmaker, who is also in the UNM’s party list with number forty three.
Academician Nikoloz Kipshidze, who is director of Central University Clinic, is fifteenth in the list, followed by Irma Nadirashvili, ex-deputy head of President’s administration; incumbent Vice Speaker of Parliament Gigi Tsereteli and incumbent MP Pavle Kublashvili.
Ex-economy minister, Giorgi Karbelashvili, and ex-minister for regional development and infrastructure, Ramaz Nikolaishvili, are nineteenth and twentieth in the list, respectively; both are also majoritarian MP candidates running in Tbilisi’s Vake constituency and in Guria region’s Ozurgeti constituency, respectively.
Next thirty candidates in the list are:
21. Zurab Melikishvili – incumbent MP;
22. Levan Bezhashvili – ex-head of the State Audit Office; a majoritarian MP Candidate in Signagi single-mandate constituency;
23. Akaki Bobokhidze – incumbent MP, who is also running as a majoritarian MP candidate in Tkibuli;
24. Givi Targamadze – incumbent MP, who chairs parliamentary committee for defense and security;
25. Khatuna Gogorishvili – incumbent MP; chairperson of parliamentary committee for procedures;
26. Mikheil Makharadze – chairman of Adjara Autonomous Republic’s Supreme Council;
27. Giorgi Meladze – incumbent MP;
28. Koba Subeliani – ex-minister in charge of IDPs issues;
29. Giorgi Gviniashvili – ex-governor of Kakheti region; he also runs as a majoritarian MP candidate in Gurjaani;
30. Akaki Minashvili – incumbent MP; chairman of parliamentary committee for foreign affairs;
31. Nugzar Tsiklauri – incumbent MP; chairman of the parliamentary committee for diaspora and Caucasus issues;
32. Goga Khachidze – ex-minister of environment protection;
33. Davit Darchiashvili – incumbent MP;
34. Giorgi Kandelaki – incumbent MP;
35. Shota Malashkhia – incumbent MP;
36. Eka Kherkheulidze – incumbent MP;
37. Levan Tarkhnishvili – he was chairman of Central Election Commission in October, 2007-January, 2010 and then worked as advisor to President Saakashvili;
38. Badri Basishvili – incumbent MP;
39. Samira Ismailova – an employee of the Education Ministry;
40. Tariel Khizaneishvili – deputy mayor of Tbilisi;
41. Gena Muradian – head of the Association of Georgian Armenians;
42. Meri Kokaia – an employee of the President’s press office;
43. Khatuna Ochiauri – incumbent MP;
44.Elene Javakhadze – incumbent MP;
45. Ketevan Mchedlidze – an employee of the Parliament;
46. Lasha Damenia – incumbent MP;
47. Giorgi Godabrelidze– incumbent MP;
48. Otar Goidze– incumbent MP;
49. Davit Gogoshidze – ex-governor of Racha-Lechkhumi region;
50. Khanahmed Garibov – member of City Council in Gardabani;
There are total of 17 female candidates in UNM’s party list – most of them in the top 50 of the list, including four of them in the top 10.
77 seats in 150-member Parliament will be allocated under the proportional, party-list system among those parties and election blocs, which will clear 5% threshold, and remaining 73 seats will go to majoritarian MPs elected in single-mandate constituencies.
Candidates positioned highest on their respective party’s list of MP candidates have more chances of getting seat in the legislative body if that party or an election bloc clears 5% threshold in the elections.
According to Georgia’s election code, any political party or an election bloc of several parties will automatically endorse six candidates from the list in the Parliament if it clears 5% threshold; so if a party receives 5% or more but if it translates into having only one or two MPs, this party or a bloc will anyway be able eligible to having endorse six MP at the expense of taking seats from other parties having better results in elections. It means that clearing of 5% threshold will automatically give a party or a bloc opportunity to establish a faction within the parliament, which requires having at least six lawmakers.