Georgian local politicians learn about electoral processesApril 7th, 2014 Caucasus | Countries and Regions | Development Aid | Education | Georgia | News | Society
In 2012, United National Movement (UNM), the party that Jarl Hjalmarson Foundation works with in Georgia lost the parliamentary elections. At the moment, UNM is in the middle of a transformation process, often followed by a loss of election. However, UNM has both lost and gained new members. Meanwhile, polls show that the support for the current Georgian Dream coalition government is decreasing with disappointed people still waiting for its promises to be realized.
On June 15, 2014, there will be local elections in Georgia and to strengthen UNM representatives in the regions, the Foundation, in co-operation with International Republican Institute (IRI), arranged two trainings on electoral issues. Between March 28-31 and April 1-4 2014, nearly a hundred local politicians gathered to learn about election procedures. Moreover, the aim of the seminars was so called training of trainers (ToT); and to offer appropriate tools for participants to further train party members of their regions.
During trainings, which took place at Lake Bazaleti, a couple of kilometers outside of the capital Tbilisi, there were sessions on complains and appeals, voter’s lists, and the implementation of the new Election Code. The reforms in the Election Code were presented in details by representatives of the Central Elections Commission of Georgia. One popular actitivty was to simulate elections as if it was the actual day of election.
If local elections will be a comeback for UNM remains to be seen, but the fact that election procedures are improving is another step forward for Georgia that is one of the most successful countries in the region when it comes to establish democracy.
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