Home > 4.2 Presidential elections > GEORGIA - Opinion on the Unified Election Code
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Paragraph 10

In accordance with this outline, Chapter I presents the “general provisions” in a very detailed way. Article 5 appropriately provides, consistently with Article 28 of the Constitution, that “elections in Georgia are universal” and that citizens of 18 years or over have the right to vote.  The Article is limited to a clear statement of this general principle, however, and leaves the problem of how to implement it in fact towards all citizens to the specific chapters of the Code.  While this approach is logical, it might be desirable to include in the Article a reference to certain major aspects of this problem, such as the matter of citizens who are residing or dwelling abroad at the time of election (see e.g. Articles 9.5.d and 10.4) and the matter that the voter group may not be entirely the same in national elections (presidential and parliamentary) and in local elections, which differ at least in that persons residing abroad are excluded in the latter (Article 110.3). Therefore, a relevant paragraph should be added under Article 5 defining which citizens (e.g. additional qualifications with regard to the duration of absence from the motherland) may participate in which types of elections (e.g. in presidential and parliamentary elections, but not in local elections).[1] Since Article 5 preferably should remain a general provision, it might be sufficient to mention there the principal or minimum effort that the State should make (through embassies and consulates and other absentee balloting arrangements) in order to enable Georgians abroad to exercise their voting right.