Constitution of Georgia (1995)
The people of Georgia whose strong will is to establish a democratic social order, economic independence, a social and legal state, to guarantee universally recognised human rights and freedoms, to strengthen the state independence and peaceful relations with other countries, announce to the world this Constitution based upon many centuries of state tradition and the main principles of the 1921 Constitution.
Chapter 1 - General Provisions
1. Georgia is an independent, unified and indivisible law-based state, ratified by the referendum carried out on March 31, 1991 throughout the territory of the country, including the Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic of Abkhazia and the former autonomous district of South Ossetia and further adduced by the act of April 9th, 1991 restoring the independence of the Georgian state.
2. The form of political order of Georgia is a democratic Republic.
3. "Georgia" is the name of the Georgian state.
1. The territory of the Georgian state is determined by the circumstances of the country on December 21st, 1991. The territorial integrity of Georgia and the inviolability of state borders is confirmed and recognised by the Constitution and the laws of Georgia and also by the international community and international organisations.
2. The alienation of the territory of Georgia is forbidden. Changes to the state borders are possible only through bilateral agreement with neighbouring states.
3. The internal territorial arrangement of Georgia is determined by the Constitution on the basis of the principle of division of power after the full restoration of the jurisdiction of Georgia over the whole territory of the country.
4. The citizens of Georgia regulate matters of local importance through local self-government as long as it does not encroach upon national sovereignty. The procedure for the creation of self-governing bodies and their powers and relationship with state bodies, is determined by organic law.
1. The Georgian supreme national bodies have exclusive power to administer:
a. legislation on Georgian citizenship, human rights and freedoms, emigration and immigration, entrance to and departure from the country, temporarily or permanently resident foreign nationals and stateless persons, within the territory of Georgia;
b. the status and administration of boundaries and their protection; the status of territorial waters, airspace, the continental shelf and special economic zones and their defence;
c. national defence and security; military forces, military/industrial production and the arms trade;
d. the issues of war and cessation of hostilities; the determination of the existence of and the introduction of a state of emergency or martial law;
e. foreign policy and international relations;
f. custom and tariff regimes and foreign trade;
g. state finances and state loans; the minting of money; legislation on banking, credit, insurance and taxes;
h. standards and measurements; geodesy and cartography; time and state statistics;
i. a unified system of energy; communications; the merchant fleet; flags of ships; harbours of state importance; airports and airfields; the control of airspace; transit and air transport; registration of air transport; meteorological services and a system of environmental protection;
j. railways and roads of importance to the whole state;
k. fishing in oceans and the high sea;
l. boundary-sanitary cordon;
m. legislation on pharmaceutical medicines;
n. certification and accreditation of secondary and high schools, legislation on academic, scientific and professional titles and honours;
o. legislation on intellectual property;
p. legislation on trade, criminal law, civil law, administrative and labour law; legislation on a criminal procedure and other legal proceedings;
r. police and criminal investigation;
s. legislation on land, minerals and natural resources.
2. Matters relating to joint federal administration will be determined separately.
1. When conditions are appropriate and self-government bodies have been established throughout the territory of Georgia, Parliament shall be formed with two chambers: the Council of the Republic and the Senate.
2. The Council of Georgia consists of members elected by proportional representation.
3. The Senate consists of members elected from Abkhazia, Adjaria and other territorial units of Georgia as well as five members appointed by the President.
4. The composition, powers and procedures for election to the chambers are determined by organic law.
1. The people are the sole source of state power in Georgia. State power is only exercised within the framework of the Constitution.
2. Power is exercised by the people through referendum, their representatives and other democratic forms.
3. No individual or group of individuals has the right to seize or unlawfully take state power.
4. State power is exercised and based upon legal state principles.
1. The Constitution is the supreme law of the state. All other legal acts shall be issued in accordance with the Constitution.
2. The legislation of Georgia corresponds with universally recognised norms and principles of international law. International treaties or agreements concluded with and by Georgia, if they do not contradict the Constitution of Georgia, take precedence over domestic normative acts.
The state recognises and defends universally recognised human rights and freedoms as eternal and supreme values. The people and the state are bound by these rights and freedoms as well as by current legislation for the exercise of state power.
The state language of Georgia is Georgian; in Abkhazia, Abkhazian is also the state language.
The state recognises the special importance of the Georgian Orthodox Church in Georgian history but simultaneously declares complete freedom of religious belief and confessions, as well as independence of the church from the state.
Tbilisi is the capital of Georgia.
The State symbols of Georgia are determined by organic law.
Chapter Two - Citzenship of Georgia, Fundamental Human Rights and Freedoms
1. Citizenship is conferred by birth or by naturalisation.
2. A citizen of Georgia may not simultaneously be a citizen of another country.
3. The procedures for naturalisation and loss of citizenship are determined by organic law.
1. The state shall protect its citizens irrespective of their location.
2. No person may be deprived of his citizenship.
3. The expulsion of a citizen from the country is prohibited.
4. The extradition of a citizen of Georgia to another country is prohibited, except in cases defined by treaty. A decision on extradition may be appealed in court.
Everyone is born free and is equal before the law, regardless of race, skin colour, language, sex, religion, political and other beliefs, national, ethnic and social origin, property and title of nobility or place of residence.
1. A person's life is inviolable and is protected by law.
2. Special forms of punishment - capital punishment before its full abrogation may be envisaged by organic law for extremely serious crimes directed against a person's life. Only the Supreme Court has the right to impose such a punishment.
Everyone has the right to freedom of personal development.
1. A person's honour and dignity are inviolable.
2. Torture, inhumane, brutal or degrading treatment or punishment is impermissible.
1. The freedom of a person is inviolable.
2. Arrest or other restrictions on personal freedoms are prohibited without a court order.
3. The detention of an individual is permissible in circumstances determined by law by an official specifically so authorised. The detained individual or otherwise restricted person must be conveyed to court not later than 48 hours following arrest. If within the next 24 hours the court has not made a decision concerning the arrest or other kind of restriction, the individual must be released forthwith.
4. The physical or moral coercion of a detained or otherwise restricted individual is impermissible.
5. A detained individual must be immediately made aware of his rights and the basis for his detention. The detained individual may demand the assistance of a lawyer . This right must always be satisfied.
6. The term of detention of a suspected individual should not exceed 72 hours before indictment and the accused cannot be held on remand for more than 9 months.
7. Failure to comply with this Article is punishable by law. An individual detained or unlawfully arrested has the right to compensation.
1. Every individual has the right to freedom of speech, thought, conscience, religion and belief.
2. The persecution of an individual for his thoughts, beliefs or religion is prohibited as is compulsion to express opinions about them.
3. These rights may not be restricted unless the exercise of these rights infringes upon the rights of other individuals.
1. Every individual's private life, place of personal activity, personal papers and correspondence are inviolable. Communication by telephone and other technical means are inviolable. Restrictions on these rights are permissible only by a courts order or without such an order by the necessity as determined by law.
1. The right to inherit and own property is recognised and guaranteed. The abrogation of the universal right of property, its acquisition, transfer and inheritance is prohibited.
2. Restrictions on the rights mentioned in part 1 of this Article are possible for social necessity as determined by law and established right.
3. Confiscation of property because of social necessity is permissible in circumstances determined by law, by an order of court or through urgent necessity by organic law but only if full compensation is made.
1. Every individual lawfully within the territory of Georgia is free to move within that territory and is free to choose his place of residence.
2. Everyone lawfully within the territory of Georgia is free to leave the country. A citizen of Georgia can freely enter the country.
3. Restriction of these rights is permissible only in accordance with the law, in order to guarantee state and public security as necessary for the existence of a democratic society, public health, prevention of crime and fulfilment of justice.
1. The freedom of intellectual creativity and intellectual property rights are guaranteed.
2. Interference in creative activity or censorship in this sphere is prohibited.
3. The prohibition of the distribution of, or seizure of creative work is not permissible, unless it violates the legal rights of other individuals.
1. Every individual has the right to freely receive and disseminate information, to express and disseminate his opinion orally, in writing or in any other form.
2. The mass media is free. Censorship is prohibited.
3. Monopolisation of the mass media or the means of dissemination of information by the state or natural persons is prohibited.
4. Clauses 1 and 2 of this Article can be restricted by law when conditions make it necessary to do so in order to guarantee and by the conditions necessary in a democratic society for the guarantee of state and public security, territorial integrity, prevention of crime, and the defence of rights and dignities of others, to avoid the revelation of confidentially received information or to guarantee the independence and impartiality of justice in a democratic society.
1. Every individual except members of the armed forces, police and the security services has the right to hold a public assembly without arms either indoors or in the open air without prior permission.
2. The need for prior notification of the authorities is determined by law, if a public assembly or manifestation is held on a public thoroughfare.
3. The government may halt a public assembly only if it becomes criminal in nature.
1. Every individual has the right to create and join any association, including trade unions.
2. Citizens of Georgia have the right to create political parties or other political organisations and participate in their activities in accordance with organic law.
3. The creation and activities of such public and political entities whose goal is to overthrow or change the Constitutional order of Georgia by force, or violate the independence of the country or violate the country's territorial integrity or advocate war and violence, or attempt to induce ethnic, racial, social and national unrest is impermissible.
4. The creation of the para-military forces by public or political organisations is prohibited.
5. Persons enrolled in the armed forces, intelligence service or the forces of the Ministry of Internal Affairs or persons who have been appointed as judges or procurators must cease membership in any political organisation.
6. The prohibition of activities of public and political organisations is possible only by court order under the circumstances and by the procedure determined by organic law.
The state is authorised to establish restrictions on the political activity of citizens of foreign countries and stateless persons.
1. A citizen who has attained the age of 18 has the right to participate in referenda and elections of state and self-governing bodies. The freedom of constituents to express their will is guaranteed.
2. Only individuals who are confirmed as ineligible by a court or who have been deprived of their liberty by the due process of law, are deprived of the right to participate in elections and referenda.
1. Every citizen is allowed to hold any official state position as long as he/she satisfies established requirements.
2. The requirements for positions of state institutions are defined by law.
1. Labour is free.
2. The state is obliged to foster conditions for the development of free enterprise and competition. Except in circumstances provided for by law the monopolisation of activity is prohibited. Consumer rights are protected by law.
3. On the basis of international agreements regulating labour relationships, the state protects the labour rights of Georgian citizens abroad.
4. The defence of labour rights, legal payment and healthy working conditions, the working conditions of minors and women are determined by law.
The state guarantees equal social and economic development within the whole territory of Georgia. In order to guarantee the social and economic progress of the high mountain regions special privileges are envisaged in law.
The state must help the unemployed to find work. The conditions for the provision of a minimum standard of living and the status of the unemployed are determined by law.
The right to strike is recognised. Rules for exercising this right are determined by law which also provides for the continuance of work in areas deemed to be of vital importance.
1. The state fosters the development of culture, the unrestricted participation of nationals in cultural life, the expression and enrichment of cultural origins, the recognition of national and universal values and the deepening of international cultur al relationships.
2. Each citizen is obliged to care for, protect and preserve the cultural heritage. The state protects cultural heritage by law.
1. Each citizen has the right to education. Freedom of choice in education is guaranteed.
2. The state guarantees that educational programmes conform to international standards and rights.
3. The state guarantees pre-school education. Primary education is mandatory for all. The state provides free primary education for all. Citizens have the right to free secondary, professional and tertiary education at state institutes within the frame work and by the rules established in law.
4. The state supports educational institutions as established in law.
1 Marriage is based upon equality of rights and the free will of spouses.
2. The state supports the prosperity of the family.
3. The rights of mothers and children are protected by law.
1. Everyone has the right to health insurance as a means of gaining medical assistance. In circumstances determined by law, free medical services are guaranteed.
2. The state supervises every health institution and the production and distribution of medicine.
3. Everyone has the right to live in a healthy environment and use natural and cultural surroundings. Everyone is obliged to protect the natural and cultural surroundings.
4. The state guarantees the protection of nature and the rational use of it to ensure a healthy environment, corresponding to the ecological and economic interests of society, and taking into account the interests of current and future generations.
5. Individuals have the right to complete, objective and timely information on their working and living conditions.
1. Citizens of Georgia are equal in social, economic, cultural and political life regardless of national, ethnic, religious or language origin. According to universally recognised principles and norms of international law all have the right to develop their culture freely without any discrimination and interference. They may use their language in private and public life.
2. In accordance with universally recognised principles of international law, the exercise of minority rights should not oppose the sovereignty, integrity and political independence of Georgia.
The Constitution does not deny other universally recognised rights, freedoms and guarantees of the individual and citizen, which are not specifically stated, but are the natural outcome of the principles contained within the Constitution.
1. Each individual is considered innocent until proven guilty through the due process of law.
2. No individual is obliged to prove his innocence.
3. A person can only be proven guilty if the evidence is incontrovertible. Every suspicion or allegation not proven by the procedure established by law must be decided in favour of the defendant.
1. Every citizen has the right, according to the law, to know information about himself which exists in state institutions as well as official records existing there, except for information containing state, professional or commercial secrets.
2. Information existing in official papers connected with health, finances or other private matters of an individual are not available to other individuals without the prior consent of the affected individual, except in cases determined by law, when it is necessary for the state and public security, defence of health, rights and freedoms of others.
1. Each individual has the right of appeal to the courts to protect his rights and freedoms.
2. Every individual can only be judged by the court which has jurisdiction over the particular case.
3. The right to defence is guaranteed.
4. No individual can be brought to court twice for the same case.
5. No individual has to answer for an action if it was not considered a violation of law at the moment it was performed. Laws that do not reduce or abrogate responsibility have no retroactive force.
6. Anybody charged with a criminal offence has the right to obtain the attendance and examination of witnesses on his behalf under the same conditions as those of the prosecution.
7. Evidence obtained by breaking the law is inadmissible and has no legal force.
8. No individual is obliged to give evidence against himself or his relative as defined by law.
9. Any individual who suffers damage illegally caused by the state, self-governing bodies or officers is guaranteed full compensation through the court from state resources.
1. The defence of human rights and freedoms within the territory of Georgia is supervised by the Public Defender, who is elected for five years by the majority of the whole of Parliament.
2. The Public Defender is authorised to reveal facts about the violation of human rights and freedoms and to report on it to corresponding bodies and individuals.
3. The power of the Public Defender is determined by organic law.
1. Every individual living in Georgia is obliged to obey the constitution and legislation of Georgia.
2. The exercise of the rights and freedoms of one individual shall not violate the rights and freedoms of others.
The main rights and freedoms enunciated in the Constitution apply to corporate bodies as well as to individuals.
1. During a state of emergency or martial law the President of Georgia is authorised to restrict the exercise of rights and freedoms contained in Articles 18, 20, 21, 22, 24, 25, 30, 33 and 41 of the Constitution either in the whole country or a part o f it. The President is obliged to submit a decision on a state of emergency or martial law to Parliament for ratification within 48 hours.
2. If a state of emergency or martial law is introduced elections for the President, Parliament and other representative bodies of Georgia, can only be held once the state of emergency or martial law has been removed.
1. Foreign citizens and stateless persons living in Georgia have the rights and obligations equal to the rights and obligations of citizens of Georgia with some exceptions envisaged by the Constitution and law.
2. As determined by law and in accordance with universally recognised norms of international law, Georgia gives asylum to foreign citizens and stateless persons.
3. Extradition of a person who has been given asylum to another state, who is pursued on political grounds or pursued for an activity which is not regarded as a crime by the legislation of Georgia is prohibited.
Chapter Three - The Parliament of Georgia
The Parliament of Georgia is the supreme representative body of the country which exercises legislative power, determines the main directions of domestic and foreign policy and exercises general control over the Cabinet of Ministers and other function s within the framework determined by the Constitution.
1. The Parliament of Georgia consists of one hundred and fifty deputies elected for a term of four years by a proportional system and eighty five elected by a majoritarian system for a period of four years on the basis of free, universal, equal and direct suffrage by secret ballot.
2. A citizen having attained the age of twenty five and with the right to vote, may be elected as a Member of Parliament.
3. The internal structure of Parliament and its activities are determined by the regulations of Parliament.
1. The right to run in elections is granted to citizens' political organisations registered in accordance to law, whose initiative is supported by the signatures of not less than 50 000 voters or which has a representative in the Parliament at the time elections are called. The right to run in elections through the majoritarian system is recognised if the individual is supported by 1000 signatories or if the individual was elected a Member of Parliament in the previous elections.
2. The mandates of Members of Parliament shall be distributed only among those political parties and electoral blocks which receive at least 5% of the votes of those who participate in the elections held under the proportional system.
3. Regular elections for Parliament are held at least 15 days before the expiration of its term. If the date for holding the elections falls during a state of emergency or a martial law, elections are held in not more than sixty days after the end of this situation. The President sets the date for an election at least sixty days before such an election.
4. The authority of the previous Parliament ceases immediately after the first meeting of the newly elected Parliament
5. The procedure for the election of a Member of Parliament and also his ineligibility to participate in elections is determined by the Constitution and organic law.
The first sitting of the newly elected Parliament shall be held within 20 days after the elections. The day of the first sitting is determined by the President. The Parliament will begin its work when the election of two thirds of the Members of Parliament has been confirmed.
1. A Member of Parliament of Georgia is the representative of the whole of Georgia and exercises a free mandate. His recall is impermissible.
2. Bringing an action against a Member of Parliament, his detention or arrest, or the search of his person, place of residence, car or workplace is permissible only with the consent of the Parliament, except in cases where he is caught in the commissi on of a crime. In such a case Parliament must be notified immediately. If Parliament does not agree to the Members detention, he must be released immediately.
3. A Member of Parliament has the right not to give evidence on facts disclosed to him as a Member of Parliament. No seizure of documents connected with this matter may take place. A Member of Parliament retains this right after the expiration of his term.
4. A Member of Parliament is not answerable for the ideas and opinions expressed in and out of Parliament while performing his duties.
5. The conditions allowing a Member of Parliament to carry out his duties are guaranteed. State bodies guarantee his personal security.
6. Preventing a Member of Parliament from carrying out his duties is punishable by law.
1. A Member of Parliament may not occupy any position in a state office or carry out entrepreneurial activities. Cases of incompatibility are determined by law.
2. In the event of a violation of the preceding clause the individual will cease to be a Member of Parliament.
3. Members of Parliament receive a salary as determined by law.
1. Any question of the recognition of the authority of a Member of Parliament, or the pre-term expiration of his duties, is decided by the Parliament. This decision may be appealed to the Constitutional Court.
2. The pre-term expiration of duties of a Member of Parliament is possible in the following cases:
b. recognition of the validity of charges by a court conviction;
c. inability to work as recognised by a court, loss without a trace or death;
d. occupation of a position or carrying out of activities incompatible with the status of a deputy;
e. loss of citizenship of Georgia;
f. failure to participate in the work of Parliament for period of four months without good cause.
1. The Parliament of Georgia for the term of its authority, in accordance to the rules determined by its procedure, elects the Chairman and the Deputy Chairmen of the Parliament, by secret ballot among them one from Abkhazian and one from Adjarian Memb ers of Parliament by their nomination.
2. The Chairman leads the work of the Parliament, guarantees the free expression of opinions, signs acts adopted by Parliament and performs other duties envisaged by its regulations.
3. The Deputy Chairmen perform the duties of the Chairman by the Chairman's order, in case of the Chairman's inability to exercise his authority or his dismissal.
4. The Chairman on behalf of the Parliament performs the complete administrative functions in the House of Parliament by the procedures envisaged by its regulations.
1. Committees are created in the Parliament for the term of its authority, for the purpose of preliminary preparation of legislative issues, for fostering fulfilment of decisions, for creating bodies responsible to it and for supervision of goverment a ctivities.
2. In cases envisaged by the Constitution and the rules of procedure, or by the request of not less than one fourth of the deputies temporary committees are created in the Parliament. Representation of the Parliamentary majority in such committees shal l not exceed one half of the total number of the committee members.
3. Upon the request of the investigative committee presence at sittings, and delivery of necessary documents for an investigation on any particular issue is obligatory.
1. A bureau of Parliament is created for the organisation of Parliamentary work. It consists of the Chairman, Deputy Chairmen, deputies of Parliamentary Committees and Parliamentary factions.
2. The bureau considers the appointment of the officials whose appointment by Parliament is required by the Constitution upon the advise of the appropriate committees and in accordance with the rules of procedure. The decision is submitted to the President and to Parliament. The Bureau also makes decisions on issues relating to the organisation of the work of Parliament.
1. Members of Parliament can unite in Parliamentary factions. The number necessary to create a faction must be not less than ten.
2. The creation and functioning of a faction, as well as its authority are determined by the laws and rules of procedure.
1. A Member of Parliament has the right to question bodies subordinate to Parliament, members of the government, mayors of cities, governors or executive bodies of territorial units at every level and state institutions and to receive answers from them .
2. A faction and a Parliamentary group of at least ten deputies have the right to question any body subordinate to Parliament and particular members of the government, who must answer these questions at the sittings of Parliament. The answer may become the matter of consideration by the Parliament.
1. Sittings of Parliament and its chambers are public. By a vote of the majority of those present Parliament is authorised to declare a sitting or a part of it closed, while considering a specific issue.
2. Officials that are elected or appointed and confirmed by Parliament are authorised and may be required to attend sittings of the Parliament, its committees and commissions. Such officials should be heard immediately.
3. Voting is always open except in cases envisaged by the Constitution and law.
4. Proceedings of Parliamentary sittings, except for secret matters, are published by Parliament in its Record.
1. The Parliament gathers of its own accord for regular sessions twice a year. The Autumn session opens on the first Tuesday of September and closes on the third Friday of December. The spring session opens on the first Tuesday of February and closes on the last Friday of June.
2. The President of Georgia at the request of the Chairman, or not less than one fourth of the deputies or on his own initiative may convene an extraordinary sitting of Parliament in the period between regular sessions. If within 48 hours after such a written submission has been made Parliament has not convened, Parliament is obliged to convene within a further 48 hours according to its rules of procedure.
3. Extraordinary sittings must have a specific agenda and the sitting closes once the agenda has been completed.
4. The declaration of war or a state of emergency by the President causes the convening of Parliament within 48 hours. Parliament sits until the end of the particular situation.
Decisions of Parliament on war and the cessation of hostilities, emergency situations and issues determined by Article 46 of the Constitution are adopted by the majority of the total number of the Parliament.
1. To introduce a motion to impeach the President of Georgia, a third of the Members of Parliament must agree, in the circumstances envisaged by Article 75.2 of this constitution. The case is submitted to the Supreme Court or the Constitutional Court for judgement.
2. If the Supreme Court confirms by its judgement that the President has committed the crime adduced or the Constitutional Court confirms the President's violation of the Constitution, the Parliament by a simple majority can vote to put to a vote the impeachment of the President.
3. The President is considered impeached and removed if not less than two thirds of all the Parliament vote in favour of the motion to impeach.
4. If the Parliament does not vote within 30 days, the motion is considered dropped and introduction of the same motion is impermissible for one year.
5. Discussion of the charge brought against the President and the passing of a motion to impeach during war, state of emergency or martial law is not permitted in the Parliament.
1. The right to raise the question of the impeachment of the Head of the Supreme Court, members of government, the Prosecutor General, Chairman of the Chamber of Control and Members of the Council of the National Bank in cases of violation of the Constitution, high treason, or the commission of capital crimes is vested in one third of the total number of Parliament.
2. By the procedure envisaged in Article 63.2 Parliament is authorised to remove officials listed in the first clause of this Article by the majority of the total members of Parliament. The requirements of Article 63 clause 4 extend to such cases as well.
1. The Parliament of Georgia ratifies treaties and international agreements, rejects or abrogates them by the majority of the total number of Parliament.
2. Treaties and international agreements which require ratification by their terms, must be ratified as well as any treaty and international agreements which:
a. envisages entrance into an international organisation or into inter-state unity;
b. is of a military character;
c. concerns the territorial integrity of the state or the changing of the state's borders;
d. concerns borrowing or lending by the state;
e. requires a change in international legislation or the adoption of necessary laws and acts having the power of law for the fulfilment of changed obligations.
3. The Parliament must be immediately notified about the conclusion of treaties and other international agreements.
4. If a Constitutional Complaint or Submission to the Constitutional Court regarding a treaty or international agreement is made, then ratification is prohibited before a decision is made by the Constitutional Court.
1. A bill is considered passed if it is supported by the majority of those present if those present are not less than one third of the total number of Members of Parliament or by another procedure set forth by the Constitution.
2. The draft of an organic law is considered adopted if supported by the majority of the total number of Parliament.
3. The Parliament adopts a resolution in the form of a decree, unless some other procedure is required by the Constitution.
4. The right to adopt other kinds of resolutions is determined by the rules of procedure of the Parliament.
1. The right to initiate legislation is vested in the President, a Member of Parliament, a Parliamentary Faction, a committee of Parliament, the supreme representative bodies of Abkhazia and Adjaria or not less than 30 000 electors.
2. A bill submitted by the President may be considered out of term or in an accelerated way.
1. A bill adopted by Parliament is submitted to the President of Georgia within five days.
2. The President either signs and issues the law within ten days or returns it to the Parliament with further amendments.
3. If the President returns the bill to Parliament, Parliament votes on President's amendments. For adoption of his amendments the same number of votes is required as in Article 66 of this Constitution. If the amendments are adopted the President is ob liged to sign and publish the law within seven days.
4. If Parliament votes against the President's amendments, the bill as originally passed by Parliament and submitted to the President is voted on again. The law or organic law is considered passed if supported by not less than three fifths of the total number of deputies or by not less than two thirds of the total number of deputies in the case of Constitutional amendments.
5. If the President refuses to sign the law within the determined period, it is signed and issued by the Chairman.
6. The law enters into force only on the fifteenth day after its official publication, unless another date is provided.
Chapter Four - The President of Georgia
1. The President of Georgia is the Head of State and exercises executive power.
2. The President of Georgia is responsible for and exercises domestic and foreign policy of the state. He guarantees the unity and integrity of the country and the activity of state bodies according to the Constitution.
3. The President of Georgia is the supreme representative of Georgia in foreign relations.
1. The President shall be elected in free, universal, equal and direct suffrage by secret ballot for a term of five years. The same person can only serve two consecutive terms as President.
2. Any citizen of Georgia who is eligible to vote, has attained the age of thirty five, has lived in Georgia for at least fifteen years and is living in Georgia on the day elections are scheduled may be elected as the President of Georgia.
3. The right to nominate a candidate for the Presidency is vested in a political party or an initiative group whose initiative is confirmed by the signatures of not less than fifty thousand electors.
4. A candidate is considered elected who receives the absolute majority of votes of the participants, if more than half of the total number of electors have participated in the elections.
5. If elections are held, but none of the candidates received the necessary votes, then the second round of the elections is held in two weeks time.
6. The second round of elections is held between the two candidates who had the best results in the first round. The candidate who receives more votes will be considered elected President if at least one third of the total number of electors participated in the ballot.
7. In the event that elections are acknowledged not to have been held or to have been held but the only candidate balloting in the first round did not receive enough votes or a President was not elected on the second round, new elections are to be hel d within two months.
8. During a state of emergency, or a martial law, no elections can be held.
9. The first round of regular elections for the Presidency is held on the second Sunday of April five years after the previous elections.
10. The procedures for the election of the President are determined by the Constitution and organic law.
1. Before occupying his position the newly elected President makes a speech delivering his programme and swears: "I, The President of Georgia, solemnly pledge before God and my nation to defend the Constitution of Georgia, the independence, the unity and indivisibility of my country. I will honestly perform the duties of President. I will protect the welfare and security of my people, and will cherish the revival and power of my nation and my homeland."
2. The ceremony mentioned in the first item of this Article is to take place on the third Sunday after the holding of Presidential elections.
The President can hold no other position, carry out commercial activity or receive another salary or compensation from any other occupation.
1. The President of Georgia:
a. concludes international agreements and treaties, negotiates with foreign states, with the consent of Parliament, appoints and relieves ambassadors and other diplomatic representatives, receives and accredits ambassadors and other diplomatic represen tatives of foreign states and international organisations;
b. appoints members of government ministers with the consent of Parliament;
c. removes ministers;
d. receives the resignation of ministers and other officials; is authorised to require them to perform their duties until a new government is appointed;
e. submits the draft of the state budget to the Parliament after the agreement with the Parliamentary committees over the main principles and directions;
f. submits to the Parliament the appointment and dismissal of officials in cases envisaged in the Constitution, law and rules;
g. in the case of war, massive disorder, violation of territorial integrity of the country, military coup, armed insurrection, ecological disaster or epidemic or in other cases when bodies of the state are deprived of their authority - declares a state of emergency throughout the whole territory of the state or its parts and submits it to Parliament within forty eight hours for approval. In the case of a state of emergency, the President is authorised to issue decrees with the power of law and take spe cial measures. The decrees are submitted to the Parliament when it gathers. Emergency authorities extend only on the territory where the emergency is declared for the reasons mentioned in this item;
h. halts or dismisses the activity of representative bodies of local self-government, or territorial units if their activity endangers the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country or the exercise of Constitutional authority of state authorities within the country;
i. issues decrees and orders, on the basis of the Constitution and the law;
j. signs and issues laws by the procedure established by the Constitution;
k. decides questions on granting citizenship and asylum;
l. awards state honours, high ranking military awards, special and honorary titles, and highest diplomatic ranks;
m. grants pardons.
2. The President sets elections for the Parliament and representative bodies by the rules determined by law.
3. The President is authorised to abrogate acts of bodies of the executive branch accountable to him.
4. The President is the supreme commander in chief of the armed forces of Georgia. He appoints Members of the National Security Council, presides over its sittings and appoints and dismisses generals.
5. The President is authorised to address people and the Parliament, and once a year he submits a report to Parliament on the most important questions concerning the state.
6. The President exercises other authorities determined by the Constitution and law.
1. By the request of not less than two hundred thousand electors or on his own initiative, the President fixes a referendum within thirty days following receipt of such a request on the issues determined by the Constitution and law.
2. Holding a referendum for the adoption or the abrogation of law, amnesty or pardon or on ratification or rejection of treaties and international agreements and on questions which restrict principle Constitutional human rights and freedoms is prohibited.
3. Questions connected with fixing and holding referenda are determined by organic law.
1. The President has personal immunity. While occupying position, his arrest or bringing criminal proceedings against him is impermissible.
2. Parliament has the right to relieve the President of his duties according to the procedures of Article 63 of the Constitution and according to procedures determined by organic law, for violation of the Constitution, or high treason or other capital crimes:
a. for violation of the Constitution if this is confirmed by the Constitutional Court;
b. for high treason or other capital crimes if confirmed by the decision of the Supreme Court.
1. In cases where the President is unable to perform his duties or in the case of pre-term expiration, the powers of the President are delegated to the Chairman of Parliament. Within this period the duties of the Chairman of Parliament are performed by one of his substitutes.
2. A person holding the position of President in these cases cannot use the rights set forth in Article 73 clauses "c", "i", and the rights envisaged in Article 74 clause one.
3. Elections for the President are held within forty five days after the expiration of the President's duties and its holding is the responsibility of the Parliament.
1. After taking the oath, the President, in order to exercise his executive role, accepts the resignation of the government but he can charge it to perform its duties until a new government is formed. The President is obliged to form a government within two weeks and submit it for ratification to Parliament. After consideration by the appropriate Parliamentary committee, the Parliament confirms it by the majority of the total number of deputies.
2. In cases where Parliament does not ratify the government, the President is authorised to submit the same government for ratification or a new one. The same government can be submitted twice. The procedure for a second submission is determined by law.
3. In the event of the removal of a minister, a new minister is nominated and submitted to the Parliament within two weeks.
1. Parliament confirms the structures and procedures of activity of the executive branch upon the submission of the President.
2. The armed forces, state security forces, and the police shall not be united.
1. Members of government are responsible to the President
2. Members of government submit their resignations to the President.
1. Member of the government may hold no other position, except a party position, may not be involved in commercial activities nor receive a salary or other permanent remuneration from any other activity.
2. Member of government is authorised to resign by the procedure determined by law.
3. The removal of a member of government is possible only by the President or by the Parliament by the rules determined in Article 64 of this Constitution.
1. Ministries are created on the basis of law in the fields necessary for the functioning of the state and public life.
2. Ministry is directed by a minister who takes decisions independently on matters under his jurisdiction. Ministers issue orders on the basis of law and for its implementation.
3. A State Minister who directs chancellery and fulfils separate tasks under the direction of the President is considered to be part of the government.
Chapter Five - The Judiciary
1. Judicial power is exercised by Constitutional supervision, the administration of justice and other forms determined by law.
2. Acts of courts are binding on the whole territory of the country for all state bodies and persons.
3. The judiciary is independent and its function is exercised only by courts.
4. Courts make decisions on behalf of Georgia.
1. The legal body for Constitutional supervision is the Constitutional Court of Georgia. Its authority, rights of creation and activity are determined by the Constitution and organic law.
2. Justice is performed by general courts. Their system and rules of procedure are determined by law.
3. The creation of military courts is possible in war conditions and only within the system of general courts.
4. The creation of emergency or special courts is prohibited.
1. A judge is independent in his activity and is subject only to the Constitution and law. Any interference in a judge's activities in order to influence his decision is prohibited and punished by law.
2. The removal of a judge from a case, his preliminary dismissal or transfer to another position is permissible only by law in prescribed circumstances.
3. No one has the right to make a judge accountable in a particular case.
4. All acts which restrict the independence of a judge are void.
5. The repeal, change to or halting of a court decision is possible only by a court by the procedure in accordance to rules determined by law.
1. Cases in court are considered in open sittings. Cases may be closed only as provided by law. Decisions of courts are announced publicly.
2. Jurisdiction is exercised in the state language. Persons not having command of the legal language of the court are provided with interpreters. In the regions where the population does not have a command of the state language, the state provides teaching in the state language and explanations of matters pertaining to its jurisdiction.
3. Legal proceedings are exercised on the base of equality and competition of the parties.
1. A judge must be a citizen of Georgia who has attained the age of thirty, who has high legal education, and at least five years experience in the practise of law.
2. A judge is appointed for a period of not less than ten years.
3. The position of a judge is incompatible with any other occupation or remunerative activity, except pedagogical activities. A judge cannot be a member of a political party, or participate in political activities.
1. Judges have personal immunity. Bringing a judge before a criminal court, his detention or arrest, the search of his workplace, car or place of residence without the consent of the Chairman of the Supreme Court is impermissible. In cases where he is caught committing a crime, this should be immediately reported to the Chairman of the Supreme Court. If the Chairman of the Supreme Court does not give his consent, the detained or arrested judge must be released forthwith.
2. State guarantees the security of a judge and his family.
1. The Constitutional Court of Georgia exercises its authority in accordance with the norms of Constitutional procedure.
2. The Constitutional Court of Georgia consists of nine judges. Three members of the court are appointed by the President, three members are elected by the Parliament by three fifths of the total number of deputies and three members are appointed by the Supreme Court. The tenure of the members of Constitutional Court is ten years. The Constitutional Court selects the Chairman of the court for a period of five years. Elections of a Chairman for a second term is not permissible.
3. A member of the Constitutional Court may not be a person who has held the position before.
4. A member of the Constitutional Court must be a citizen of Georgia who has attained the age of 35 and has a high legal education. The procedure for selection, appointment and election, release from duties and other activities of Constitutional jurisdiction are determined by law.
5. Members of the Constitutional Court have personal immunity. Bringing a member of the Constitutional Court before a criminal court, his detention or arrest, the search of his work place, car or place of residence without the consent of the Chairman o f the Constitutional Court is impermissible. In cases where he is caught committing a crime this should be immediately reported to the Constitutional Court. If the Constitutional Court does not give its consent the detained or arrested member must be rele ased forthwith.
1. The Constitutional Court of Georgia upon the Complaints or Submission of the President, of not less than one fifth of the Members of Parliament, of the courts, of supreme representative bodies of Abkhazia and Adjaria, of the public defenders or of a citizen and under the rules established by organic law:
a. decides the Constitutionality of the law, the President's normative acts and the normative acts of the supreme bodies of authority of Abkhazia and Adjaria;
b. considers disputes on the competence between state bodies;
c. considers questions of the constitutionality of the creation and activity of political parties;
d. considers disputes connected with the question of the Constitutionality of referenda and elections;
e. considers disputes connected with questions of the constitutionality of treaties and international agreements;
f. on the basis of complaints of citizens, considers questions of the Constitutionality of normative acts on the issues envisaged by the second chapter of this Constitution;
g. exercises other authorities determined by the Constitution and organic law of Georgia.
2. The decision of the Constitutional Court is final. Normative acts or their parts recognised as unconstitutional have no legal power from the moment the appropriate decision of the Constitutional Court is published.
1. The Supreme Court of Georgia in accordance with existing legal procedure supervises the enforcement of justice of every court of Georgia, reconsiders cases determined by law in the court of first instance.
2. The Chairman and judges of the Supreme Court of Georgia, on the President's nomination are elected for a period of not less than ten years by the Parliament by the majority of the total number of deputies.
3. The authority, organisation and procedure of the Supreme Court and the dismissal of the Chairman and judges are determined by law.
4. The Chairman and members of the Supreme Court have personal immunity. Bringing a member before a criminal court, his detention or arrest, the search of his work place, car or place of residence without the consent of the Chairman of the Supreme Cour t is impermissible. In cases where he is caught committing a crime this should be immediately reported to Parliament. If Parliament does not give its consent the detained or arrested member must be released forthwith.
1. The procurator's office of Georgia is the institution of the judiciary which performs capital prosecution, supervises investigation, enforces sentences handed down by the courts and prosecutes state indictments.
2. The procurator's office of Georgia is one, centralised system. The Procurator General is appointed for a period of five years by Parliament upon the President's nomination, by the majority of the total number of deputies. Subordinate procurators are appointed by the Procurator General.
3. The authority, organisation and procedure of the procurator's office is determined by organic law.
Chapter Six - State Finances and Control
1. The Parliament of Georgia by the majority of the total number of deputies, annually passes the state budget law which is signed by the President.
2. The procedures for making and passing the budget are determined by law.
1. Only the President has the right to submit the draft budget to Parliament.
2. The President is obliged to submit the draft budget to the Parliament not later than three months before the end of the current budget year. Together with the draft budget the President submits a report on the implementation of the budget for the current year. The President submits a report on the implementation of the state budget no later than three months following the end of the budget year.
3. Without the consent of the President it is impossible to introduce changes to the draft budget. The President can require from Parliament additional state expenditure only if he indicates how the additional expenditure will be covered.
4. If Parliament cannot pass the budget by the beginning of the new budget year, expenditures needed to cover the state's liabilities are made in accordance with the budget of the prior fiscal year.
1. Everyone is obliged to pay taxes in the amount and by the rules determined by law.
2. The structure of taxes and their introduction are determined by law.
3. Exemption from state taxes and payments from the state treasury is permissible only by law.
1. The Georgian National Bank guarantees the appropriate functioning of a steady fiscal credit system in Georgia.
2. The Georgian National Bank carries out fiscal credit and currency policies in accordance with the primary directions determined by Parliament.
3. The National Bank supervises other banks and is the banker of the government of Georgia and its fiscal agent.
4. The National Bank is independent in its activities. The authority, procedures and guarantee of independence are determined by organic law.
5. The name and units of money are determined by law. Only the National Bank has the right to issue money.
1. The highest body of the National Bank is the Board of the National Bank, whose members are approved by Parliament by the majority of the total number of deputies upon the nomination of the President, for a period of seven years. The removal of members of the Board is possible only by Parliament according to Article 64 of this Constitution.
2. The President of the National Bank is appointed and relieved of his duties by the President of Georgia, upon the nomination of the Board of the National Bank.
3. The National Bank is responsible to the Parliament and annually submits a report of the Bank's activities.
1. Financial and economic oversight of state revenues and other expenditure of the state is carried out by the Chamber of Control of Georgia. It is authorised to check activity of other bodies of fiscal and economic activity and submits proposals to the President of Georgia on improving tax legislation.
2. The Chamber of Control is independent and is responsible to Parliament. The Chairman of the Chamber of Control is appointed by Parliament, upon the nomination of the President, for a term of five years. His removal is possible only by a decision of Parliament in accordance with Article 64 of this Constitution.
3. Twice a year while submitting the preliminary and final report on the fulfilment of the budget, the Chamber of Control submits a report to Parliament on government expenditures. Once a year it submits a report of its own activities.
4. The authority, organisation, activities and the guarantee of the independence of the Chamber of Control are determined by law.
5. Other bodies of state control are created according to law.
Chapter Seven - State Defence
1. Defensive war is a sovereign right of Georgia.
2. Georgia has military forces for the defence of independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country and for the fulfilment of international obligations.
3. The structure and composition of military forces is determined by law. The structure of the military forces is confirmed by the President and its size is confirmed by the Parliament by the majority of the total number of deputies upon the recommendation of the Council of National Defence.
1. The Council of National Defence is created for military construction and organisation of the defence of the country, which is headed by the President.
2. The composition, authority and procedures of the Council of National Defence is determined by organic law.
1. The use of military forces during a state of emergency or for the fulfilment of international obligations is prohibited without the agreement of Parliament.
2. For the purpose of state defence, in special cases, or cases envisaged by law, the decision to permit the entrance in, use and movement of military forces of other countries on the territory of Georgia is made by the President. The decision is immediately submitted to Parliament for approval and it enters into force upon the consent of Parliament.
1. The defence of Georgia is the duty of every citizen.
2. The defence of the country and the fulfilment of military duties is obligatory for every eligible citizen. The form of military duty is determined by law.
Chapter Eight - Revision of the Constitution
1. Those allowed to submit a bill for the general or partial revision of the Constitution are:
a. the President;
b. more than half of the total number of Members of Parliament;
c. not less than 200 000 electors.
2. Any bill proposing a revision to the Constitution shall be submitted to Parliament, which promulgates it for general discussion. Discussion of the draft begins in Parliament one month after it has been promulgated.
3. The bill to revise the Constitution is considered passed if supported by at least two thirds of the total number of Members of Parliament.
4. The law on the revision of the Constitution is signed and published by the President of Georgia under the rules envisaged in Article 68 of the Constitution.
The announcement of a state of emergency or martial law stops the process of the revision of the Constitution until the end of the state of emergency or martial law.
Chapter Nine - Transitional Provisions
1. The Constitution of Georgia enters into force from the day of the recognition of the authority of the newly elected President and Parliament of Georgia.
2. Articles 49, 50 and 70 of the Constitution enter into force immediately after the promulgation of the Constitution.
1. The right to participate in the elections of 1995, belongs to political unions of citizens registered by rules determined by law, whose initiative is confirmed by 50 000 signatories, or which had a representative in the Parliament on the day this Co nstitution was adopted.
2. Proportional elections are held under a single party list.
3. A political union or electoral bloc has the right to submit to the majoritarian electoral district a candidate who is also on a party list for the elections held under the proportional system.
4. In majoritarian electoral districts the candidate who receives the most votes, but not less than one third of the participants in the balloting is elected the Member of Parliament.
5. If none of the candidates receives the required number of votes in the first round, a second round will be held between the two candidates having the best results.
6. This Article enters into force immediately after the promulgation of this Constitution and functions before the authorities of the newly elected Parliament are recognised.
1. After the Constitution enters into force, only those laws or parts of them which are not in contradiction to this Constitution have legal force.
2. Two years after the Constitution comes into force, the President and Parliament guarantee the official registration of normative acts adopted before the Constitution came into force and their consistency with the Constitution and laws.
3. Two years after the Constitution enters into force the Parliament of Georgia must adopt organic laws envisaged by the Constitution, or confirm the legality of normative acts which exist in those areas.
1. Before the adoption of organic laws of legal force, current legislation remains valid according to the Constitution.
2. Article 18 clauses 1 and 2 enter into force after the adoption of the appropriate legislative acts of criminal procedure.
3. The organic law on the Constitutional Court is to be adopted before February 1st, 1996.
An exception to Article 102.2 making changes or additions connected with the complete restoration of jurisdiction over the whole territory of Georgia is possible without promulgating the bill on the revision of the Constitution for general public consideration.
1. The Head of State signs and promulgates the Constitution adopted by the appropriate procedures.
2. Members of the current Georgian Parliament and the Constitutional commission sign the text of the Constitution. After the Constitution enters into force, for at least one year, the text of the Constitution must be displayed openly in the buildings of every local body of Georgia, in order that everyone may be allowed to know its contents.