4 Oct 2019 21:54

Abkhaz opposition demands cancelling Khadjimba's presidential inauguration ceremony set for Oct 9

SUKHUM. Oct 4 (Interfax) - The Abkhaz opposition party Amtsakhara (Ancestral Lights) has demanded cancelling the inauguration ceremony of Raul Khadjimba, whom the Abkhaz Central Elections Commission (CEC) has recognized as president elect.

Khadjimba's inauguration is scheduled for October 9.

"We demand that the authorities cancel the inauguration of the not-elected president of Abkhazia set for October 9," Amtsakhara said in a statement published in Abkhaz opposition media outlets on Friday.

"No president was elected in the follow-up voting in the election," as "none of the candidates garnered more than half of the votes" cast by the voters who came to polling stations, the statement said.

Alkhas Kvitsinia, Amtsakhara's presidential candidate, appealed the CEC's decision with the Abkhaz Supreme Court, which upheld the CEC's decision to recognize Khadjimba as the winner.

Amtsakhara argued that the court's judgment was passed "in blatant violation of the law and therefore is being appealed with the Cassation Board of the republic's Supreme Court."

"Hence, the first-instance court's judgment on recognizing Khadjimba as the winner has not taken legal effect, and there is no legitimately elected president in the country today. Despite this, the inauguration of a person not elected to the presidential office has been scheduled for October 9," the party said.

Amtsakhara's political council argued that these plans "absolutely disregard and ignore the laws and ignore the opinion of a large number of Abkhaz citizens who voted against Khadjimba."

Amtsakhara spokesperson Marina Gumba told journalists that the party plans to convene a congress on the day of Khadjimba's inauguration to consider "violations of the people's voting rights and the illegitimacy of the CEC's decision."

The Abkhaz CEC announced earlier that Khadjimba had won the election with 47.39%, while Kvitsinia garnered only 46.17% of the vote.