The ruling Georgian Dream – Democratic Party (GDDG) party nominated on November 6 candidates for the posts in the newly elected Parliament.
As expected, Irakli Kobakhidze, GDDG’s executive secretary, will be elected as the new parliamentary chairman.
Tamar Chugoshvili, who was number four on GDDG’s party list of MP candidates, has been named as the first vice-speaker. Other vice-speakers from GDDG will be Gia Volski, Zviad Dzidziguri and Ilia Nakashidze.
Irakli Kobakhidze, 38, will be elected as new parliamentary chairman at the inaugural session of the newly elected Parliament to replace incumbent Speaker, Davit Usupashvili.
Kobakhidze joined GDDG in January 2015 as its executive secretary; after being awarded the LLM and PhD degrees at the University of Dusseldorf, he delivered lectures at various Georgian universities and simultaneously served as UNDP’s project manager. He was also involved as an expert in strategic planning issues in the Council of Europe Office in Georgia and served as a member of the committee of experts for human rights and rule of law program at Open Society – Georgia Foundation.
Tamar Chugoshvili, who has been named as the first vice-speaker, joined the party in May. She chaired Tbilisi-based legal advocacy group Georgian Young Lawyers’ Association for two years till December, 2012, and was PM’s aide on human rights issues in 2013-2014
MP Gia Volski, who was leader of the parliamentary faction in the outgoing parliament, will now become vice-speaker.
MP Zviad Dzidziguri, leader of Conservative Party, who was number 15 on GDDG’s party list of MPs, will retain the post of vice-speaker in the new Parliament.
Ilia Nakashidze, GDDG’s majoritarian MP candidate in Khelvachauri, who defeated UNM’s candidate in the second round runoff, will become vice-speaker from Adjarian quota.
GDDG has named the chairpersons of 13 out of 15 parliamentary committees and nine of them will be new members of the ruling party.
Committee for Human Rights and Civil Integration and Committee for Sport and Youth Affairs are the two exceptions, where consultations on potential candidates for chairmanship are still underway.
There are only two committees, whose chairpersons will retain their posts in the new Parliament: Committee for Defense and Security and Committee for Procedural Issues and Rules.
Support of 76 lawmakers is needed to approve new chairpersons of parliamentary committees.
Posts for the chairmanship of parliamentary committees will be distributed as follows:
Committee for Legal Issues – Eka Beselia, who led the Committee for Human Rights and Civil Integration in the outgoing Parliament;
Committee for Defense and Security – Irakli Sesiashvili of GDDG, who will retain this post;
Committee for Foreign Affairs – Sopo Katsarava, who previously served at the British Embassy to Georgia;
Committee for European Integration – Tamar Khulordava, former deputy minister in charge of the penitentiary system; she served at the Delegation of the European Union to Georgia for years;
Committee for Healthcare and Social Issues – Akaki Zoidze, member of GDDG’s political council, who was deputy state minister till November 2003 in charge of healthcare issues;
Committee for Finances and Budgetary Issues – Irakli Kovzanadze, a former MP, who was CEO of state investment fund, Partnership Fund, from late 2012 till September, 2015;
Committee for Sector Economy and Economic Policy – Roman Kakulia, member of GDDG’s political council; former head of the EU Program Coordination Department at the Office of the State Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration;
Committee for Education, Science and Culture – Mariam Jashi, former deputy healthcare minister; later she led the Solidarity Fund;
Committee for Agrarian Issues – Otar Danelia, former agriculture minister from July 2014 to September 2016;
Committee for Environment Protection and Natural Resources – Kakha Kuchava, a corporate lawyer, who joined GDDG in July;
Committee for Regional Policy and Self-Government – Giorgi Liluashvili, deputy mayor of Tbilisi in 2016; earlier he served as the Chairman of Cartu Bankâ€™s supervisory board;
Committee for Procedural Issues and Rules – Giorgi Kakhiani, who will retain this post;
Committee for Diaspora Issues – Zviad Kvachantiradze, who led the parliament’s majority group in the outgoing Parliament.
Ex-Foreign Minister Salome Zourabichvili, who ran in Mtatsminda district of Tbilisi as an independent candidate and won the runoff elections convincingly, has been named as the first deputy chairperson of the Committee for Diaspora Issues.
MPs Gela Samkharauli and Dimitri Khundadze, who respectively led the committees for agrarian issues and healthcare in the outgoing Parliament, will take the posts of first deputy chairmen in their respective committees.
Majority Group, Factions
Archil Talakvadze, former interior minister, has been named for the post of parliamentary majority leader. He was named by GDDG as its majoritarian MP candidate in Guria region’s Ozurgeti single-mandate constituency, where he won outright in the first round of the October 8 parliamentary elections.
The Georgian Dream faction that will apparently be the largest parliamentary faction will be led by MP Mamuka Mdinaradze, who won outright in the first round of elections in Saburtalo district of Tbilisi.
It is expected that additional factions will be set up in the new Parliament by GDDG’s majoritarian MPs. Six lawmakers are needed to form a faction.
The United National Movement and Alliance of Patriots have yet to name their candidates for legislative positions.