Bidzina Ivanishvili releases statement regarding selection of judges and events developed in the ruling party

Bidzina Ivanishvili, Chairman of the Georgian Dream - Democratic Georgia, has released a statement regarding the process of selection of judges of the Supreme Court and the events developed in the ruling party.

"Over the past few weeks, the issue of the selection of judges of the Supreme Court and the difficulties existing in the ruling team have attracted public attention. As the leader of the ruling party, I feel obliged to share my attitude with the public about these issues.

Today, only 10 of 28 judges are present in the Supreme Court of Georgia, which hinders the normal functioning of the court. Consequently, the desire of the High Council of Justice to quickly submit the judicial candidates had objective grounds.

However, I think that the governing team made a reasonable decision, when it left more time for reviewing the judicial candidates. It should be noted that this decision was made by the majority of representatives of the ruling team. We respect different opinions in the team and we think that reasonable decisions can only be based on free discussion. It is welcome that the decision made by the ruling team was preceded by a statement of the High Council of Justice that they would not oppose the postponement of the selection of judges till the spring session, considering the importance of the issue. As it is known to the public, the Chairman of the Parliament announced on December 26 the postponement of the selection process.

In this siutation, Eka Beselia's statement made on December 27 was unclear, when she related her resignation as chairperson of the Legal Committee to the selection of judges.

I would like to confirm that the decision on the resignation of Eka Beselia was made in the summer.

This decision was related to the difficulties emerged in the ruling team in 2017, which I named as one of the main reasons for my return to politics - that was he lack of teamwork.

In this context, it is unfortunate that Eka Beselia related the decision made in the summer of last year to the selection of judges. The decisions made by her after resignation were even more incomprehensible – by not submitting an application to the Parliamentary Bureau for a few days and by electing Gedevan Popkhadze as First Deputy of the Chairman of Committee through grossly violating the Rules of Parliament, she went against the principle of the team and teamwork.

Taking into consideration this kind of attitude towards the team, it is absolutely natural that the issue of electing Eka Beselia as Deputy Chairwoman of Parliament was removed from the agenda.

I’ll remind you that the review of judicial candidates of the Supreme Court has not yet been renewed. Positions regarding election procedure and criteria have not been determined yet. Discussion of these issues will last for one month left before the spring session, or even longer in case of necessity. Decisions will be made on the basis of a wide range of discussions involving various stakeholders.

Therefore, I urge people who try to show themselves as the only party interested in this issue to wait for the end of the review process and refrain from making statements that damage the interests of the team, as well as the healthy process of selection of judges.

I am convinced that the final decision will further strengthen the judicial independence and impartiality that is one of the key achievements of the 2012 democratic transition and that is a subject of my personal, particular care," Bidzina Ivanishvili says in the statement.