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Mtskheta-Mtianeti – Pre-election Digest # 4

05.09.2012

From August 26 to August 31 Information Center of Mtskheta-Mtianeti observed one fact of voters’ bribery in the region.

Voters’ Bribery

On August 27, ICMM published article with title “Bribery of Voters by Majoritarian Candidate” on its website http://www.icmm.ge/. According to the article, on August 25 majoritarian candidate of the National Movement in Dusheti district Zurab Otiashvili gave 500 lari to a voter Giorgi Basilashvili on the public holiday Vazhaoba in Chargali village, Dusheti district. Otiashvili, Basilashvili and several witnesses confirmed this fact with ICMM. “He was poor man and I assisted him. If you had seen him, you would have assisted him too. That’s why we cannot understand each other; you will start criticizing me for that now. Bribery of voters has nothing to do with it. I gave him my own money. I was sorry for him and assisted blind person,” Zurab Otiashvili said. “Yes, he really assisted me. He gave me 500 lari on the stage,” Giorgi Basilashvili said. Lawyer Irine Urushadze of the Transparency International Georgia said that this fact is voter’s bribery that is criminal offence. Bribery of voter is punished under Article 1641 of the Criminal Code of Georgia. Bribery of voter is direct or indirect offer, promise, transfer or provision of money, monetary assets (including financial instrument), other property, property rights, services or other inducement as well as accepting such inducement knowingly, or entering phantom, hypocritical or other bargains with the view to avoid restrictions imposed by the law and is punished by fine or imprisonment up to three years.

After the article was published, International Society for Fair Elections a Democracy (ISFED) suggested law enforcement bodies to immediately investigate bribery of voter committed by Zurab Otiashvili, UNM’s majoritarian candidate in Dusheti district. Representatives of the Georgian Dream also appealed to the Prosecutor’s Office and requested investigation of this fact.

On August 31, Zurab Otiashvili cancelled his candidature to participate in the upcoming parliamentary elections.

Partiality

On August 30 ICMM observed that Mtskheta Mtianeti regional governor Tsezar Chocheli met Dusheti District Election Commission members in the building of the Dusheti administration. The meeting was closed for media and ICMM journalists were allowed to enter building. Neither regional governor nor the chairwoman of the Dusheti DEC Tina Bantsuri commented about the meeting.

Information Center of Mtskheta-Mtianeti Will Publish Pre-Election Digest Every Saturday before October 1, 2012

Responsible person for the content of the digest Gela Mtivlishvili Mtivlishvili@gmail.com
Cell phone:  599 34 34 77

See previous digests.


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