Launching of Election Media Centers in 10 Cities of Georgia
On 11th of July, the local self-government Election Media Centers were officially opened at the Centers for Civic Engagement (which are located in 10 Georgian cities: Akhaltsikhe, Batumi, Gori, Kutaisi, Marneuli, Ozurgeti, Rustavi, Sagarejo, Telavi and Zugdidi). The Election Media Centers offer citizens, journalists, civic groups, local authorities, political parties and election subjects a neutral space for organizing public events aimed at increasing citizens’ knowledge of and participation in the electoral process. The Media Centers offer equal opportunities to all stakeholders to use the CCE premises, which include conference and meeting rooms, computer labs and other equipment.
The purpose of the Media Centers is to play an active role in disseminating critical election-related information among local communities throughout Georgia, facilitating open debates and public dialogue on election related issues, and enabling citizens to make a more informed choice at the ballot box.
In Particular, the Election Media Centers will:
• Organize and host media briefings and pre-election debates between election candidates and political parties to publicize their election platforms, engage with journalists, and respond to citizens’ concerns;
• Organize and host discussions on recent developments in the electoral process;
• Organize and host trainings and informational sessions on election issues;
• On Election Day, serve as the local hub for election-related activities: host media briefings for candidates, parties, and monitoring organizations on the quality of election administration and conduct.
The Election Media Centers are supported by USAID’s Advancing CSO Capacities and Engaging Society for Sustainability (ACCESS) project, implemented by the East-West Management Institute. The Media Centers will operate Mondays through Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to 19:00 p.m. On Election Day, the Media Centers will open one hour prior to the opening of polling stations.