The pro-independence Round Table-Free Georgia bloc won a landslide victory that will sweep the Communist Party from power in Georgia's first free elections in 70 years, Georgian television said Tuesday.
The television said that Round Table has received 70 percent of the votes in Sunday's elections, while the Communists had mustered 20 percent.Georgian election commission chairman Irakli Zhordania said Monday preliminary results showed the opposition group got roughly twice as many votes as the Communists. Another election official estimated Round Table with 60 percent of the vote.
"Nobody expected such a big advantage for Round Table," Zhordania said. "Everywhere throughout Georgia, the advantage went to Round Table."
Pre-election polls had shown the Communists polling 30 percent with Round Table second with 21.5 and the rest of the population undecided or favoring one of the other nine blocs participating.
Final official results were expected to be available in two days, but Zhordania said enough results were in to declare Round Table the clear winner.
"This was the first time we have had multiparty elections that expressed the true will of the people," Zhordania said. "This moment can be considered one of the most decisive in the life our country."
"I want to congratulate the Round Table and its leader Ziad Gamsakhurdia for their victory on behalf of the elction commision," Zhordania said. "I hope they can fulfill all the ideas and promises for a better future of our country."