The International Society for Fair Elections and Democracy (ISFED) observed the second round of the 2017 local self-government elections at all polling stations of Kutaisi, Martvili, Ozurgeti, Khashuri, Borjomi and Kazbegi
electoral districts. ISFED Observation Mission consisted of 317
observers deployed at precinct electoral commissions and six observers at district electoral commissions (DECs) as well as six
mobile groups. Parallel Vote Tabulation (PVT) Data Analysis and Incident Centers were operating in the central office staffed with eight
data clerks and six
ISFED’s observation of the second round of local self-government elections was based on the Parallel Vote Tabulation (PVT) methodology, which enabled us to timely detect violations, systematically evaluate the entire Election Day process and verify the accuracy of the official election results.
Based on the ISFED PVT data, in the 99.7% of polling stations the counting process was conducted without major incidents, which is not statistically different from the first round figure (99.3%). The polling station #59 in Nasakirali (Ozurgeti) was an exception, where, apparently, there was a focused attempt to create disturbances and annul the precinct, which would influence the overall result of mayoral elections in the Ozurgeti district. Nevertheless, the integrity of electoral documentation was not threatened and, at the end, the summary protocol properly reflected the will of the voters.
During the second round local self-government elections, ISFED filed 15 complaints with Precinct Electoral Commissions (PECs) and 18 complaints with DECs, 4 entries were made by ISFED observers in the record books.
Election Day Results
Based on the information received about the Election Day process, ISFED is confident in its PVT results. ISFED received the information from 99.7% of observers.
№41 Beglar Sioridze – „Georgian Dream – Democratic Georgia” - 49.89%
№42 Konstantine Sharashenidze – Independent candidate- 50.11%
№8 Zaza Chachanidze - Alliance of Patriots of Georgia - 45.05%
№41 Levan Lipartia – Georgian Dream – Democratic Georgia - 54.95%
№41 Giorgi Guraspashvili - Georgian Dream – Democratic Georgia - 61.05%
№42 Ramaz Nozadze - Independent candidate - 38.95%
№3 Sandro Kamarauli - Democratic Movement – Free Georgia - 31.05%
№41 Aleksandre Zagashvili - Georgian Dream – Democratic Georgia - 68.65%
№5 Grigol Vashadze – United National Movement - 12.93%
№41 Giorgi Chigvaria - Georgian Dream – Democratic Georgia - 87.07%
№5 Mamuka Danelia – United National Movement - 6.96%
№41 Aleksandre Grigalava - Georgian Dream – Democratic Georgia - 93.04%
ISFED observers identified the following facts of violation during the vote count:
• At the polling station #59 of the election district #60 (Ozurgeti), in the Nasakirali settlement, following the vote count and tabulation process, filling of the summary protocol was unreasonably delayed due to the PEC chair feeling unwell. Within this period, after midnight, a group of individuals with badges of accreditation broke into the polling station and prevented the commission members from fulfilling their duties and completing the summary protocol. Nevertheless, the PEC members managed to protect election documentation from damage and ensured its security. Filling the summary protocol became possible only at a later stage, after the intruders left the precinct. Of note is the fact that the PEC chair initially refused to sign the summary protocol. Such refusal is against the electoral legislation as all PEC members are obliged to sign the summary protocol and write a dissenting opinion in case of any disagreement.
• At the polling station #59 of the election district #60 (Ozurgeti), valid votes with clear indication of voters’ choice in favor of the independent candidate were considered invalid by the precinct commission during the counting process. ISFED has filed a complaint with the DEC on the issue.
• At the polling station #16 of the election district #60 (Ozurgeti), 17 ballot papers were not verified by registrar’s signature. In these ballot papers the voters had made a choice in favor of the “Georgian Dream” candidate.
• After the completion of the voting process, an incident took place nearby the PEC #32 in Khashuri, where representatives of the „March of Georgians“ gathered outside the polling station, some of them tried to enter the polling station and demanded annulment of the results from the polling station. However, the representatives of the „March of Georgians“ themselves confronted each other as some of them did not want to enter the polling station. In the end, the law enforcement authorities did not allow them to enter the polling station. Later on, the members of the „March of Georgians“ relocated to the campaign office of the independent candidate, where a confrontation between them and the representatives of the „Georgian Dream” campaign office occurred. As a result, police arrested two people, but they were soon released.
ISFED Observation Mission is made possible with the generous support from the American people, by financial assistance from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The mission is supported by the Federal Foreign Office of Germany and the National Endowment for Democracy (NED). Contribution for observation of the runoff elections also comes from the Embassy of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The contents of this statement are the sole responsibility of the International Society for Fair Elections and Democracy and may not be reflecting the position of USAID, the United States Government, the Federal Republic of Germany, British Embassy, or NED.