OSCE PA – International Election Observation Mission in Georgia
Once again, I have the opportunity to experience a fascinating and challenging Country: on Sunday 28th October, the Republic of Georgia held its most recent presidential election and I have been here as international observer from the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly.
Let me make this clear, the above mentioned first phase of Georgian elections took place amid a thorny scenario due to the never-ending crisis affecting Abkhazia and South Ossetia.
Nevertheless, people seemed to be more interested in shaping their future by selecting a new political elite than in assigning blame for past blunders and constraints.
Under the circumstances, I remain deeply touched by the strong and widespread emotional involvement shown by citizens.
I would say that, over the past few years, the Georgian election process has been progressively regarded as one of the pillars of democracy expressing the true essence of a representative political system in the context of a conflictual national and international landscape.
Furthermore, the OSCE has played a crucial role in standing for the promotion of democratic values and principles in this region: and it comes with a huge political responsibility, falling on all of us.
As highlighted in our OSCE final statement, there are several issues we have to keep working on. From my perspective, in particular, there is still a significant gap between Tbilisi and rural areas with regard to the way in which the right to vote is actually exercised.
However, in general terms, the overall situation can be judged positively.
I will emphasize that I chose to carry out my monitoring activity in the most difficult zones, outside and inside the capital, in order to deepen my knowledge and understanding of such a complex reality.
It is not a secret I’m always on the lookout for real-life experiences and the voices of vulnerable people …
These days of being in contact with people, talking to them, listening to their fears and their hopes for the future have therefore been the most valuable experience I have had in the context of this mission.
I have always thought that vital and important organizations such as the OSCE must remain as close as possible to people: whenever possible, direct dialogue is always the best choice.
Hence, I am very satisfied with this electoral monitoring activity both professionally and humanly.
I hope to see a peaceful and prosperous future in this beautiful and fierce Country.