On September 14, 2016 the renewed voter information website has been launched. Electoral programs, presented by the major political parties in Georgia, are available on www.partiebi.ge. The presentation of the renewed website was attended by the leaders of political parties, members of Parliament, representatives of international and local organizations, as well as Central Election Commission and accredited embassies in Georgia.
In order to facilitate the formation of issue based policies within political parties on the one hand, and to present these plans to society in a convenient form, on the other, NIMD offered the Georgian political parties to respond to 29 questions relevant and important for the country. Each political party could have provided no more than 250 words when answering these questions.
Mr. Johanes Duma, the Ambassador of Kingdom of the Netherlands to Georgia and Armenia, spoke in his welcoming speech about the importance of the ongoing project and the need of promotion of democratic institutions in Georgia. “I wish that as many voters as possible are familiar with www.partiebi.ge and this web-site is available for the majority of them. Moreover, it is important that also political parties acknowledge the importance of the above project. Through www.partiebi.ge they can effectively present their views to the electors”, - noted Mr. Ambassador.
“This website enables to simultaneously compare political views of three electoral subjects. Moreover, until 8th of October, the website will launch the specific function through which voters can compare program offered by the party in the past, i.e. until 2012 elections, with the one the same party is offering today. Certainly, there are differences in views of the political parties, influenced by changed environment and exactly this evolution can be tracked via this website”, marked Levan Tsutskiridze, NIMD representative in the Eastern European Neighborhood.
www.partiebi.ge is NIMD’s project which regularly publishes the views of Georgian political parties on important political, economic and social issues for the country since 2012. According to Levan Tsutskiridze, this web-site also aims to improve the accountability of the political parties to their electorate: “We probably all agree, that anything in writing is more valuable. Possibly, in the course of time, not only the electors and parties, but also other stakeholders, non-governmental organizations, media, or competing party might check what was the specific party offering to the society before the elections and what did they actually do after they have been elected”.
The main objective of www.partiebi.ge is to ensure, that it is equally accessible for everyone, including those who do not possess the appropriate level of Georgian language proficiency. The programs of the parties are available in Armenian, Azerbaijani and English languages. Moreover, in partnership with Central Electoral Commission of Georgia and Blind & Visually Impaired Community, the audio files containing pre-election programs were created and are available on the above web-site.
“I have been working with NIMD within several projects. I would like to mention, that it is the one of the most important things I have been doing, since I see that with NIMD’s effort the political culture in Georgia is becoming more developed, accountable and responsible. The creation of the mentioned web-site is one of the main achievements in this term. It enables the voters to be fully informed about the political views of the parties, to compare the presented offers and then to follow their accomplishment”, - noted Bakur Kvashilava, the dean of the School of Law and Policy, at the Georgian Institute of Public Affairs, who analyzed the electoral programs and therefore shared his opinions.
Politicians presented at the event also exchanged their ideas about voting information web-site.
“This is a very important project, since it helps voters to be more informed and thus to make informed choice”, - stated Levan Tarkhnishvili, member of the United National Movement.
The member of the Republican Party, Tamar Kordzaia, talked about the significance of the web-site for voters, as well as political parties: “Through this important platform information is available in one space, as it enables the voter to be informed about the activities of the political parties, their pre-electoral campaign and program at the same time. Moreover, it also supports us. Therefore, we hope that our active cooperation will continue in future”.
The project is funded by the Embassy of Kingdom of the Netherlands to Georgia and aims to support formation of political views within the parties, as well as information of society about these views.