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Draft constitution approaches completion

Constituent Assembly finalises system of governance

The Constituent Assembly is set to meet Sunday night for final discussion on the proposed draft constitution. (AFP PHOTO)
Constituent Assembly discussed on Monday articles in the draft constitution related to the president. (AFP PHOTO)

The chairman of the Supreme Council of Judiciary will now head the special court tasked with overseeing trials of the president rather than the chairman of the Supreme Constitutional Court.

The Constituent Assembly discussed on Monday articles in the draft constitution related to the president and decided on the change in Article 155. Members also voted to make the rest of the special tribunals composed of deputy chairmen of courts rather than chairmen.

A proposal to change Article 153 from allowing the president to call for a nationwide referendum on “important matters” to “matters threatening national security” was turned down by most members and the article remains unchanged.

The assembly also specified that the prime minister or any of the cabinet ministers could not have a second nationality that they gained through naturalisation, but kept it so that those who have a second nationality by birth are eligible so far as they give up that nationality.

The draft constitution will also now specify the exact number of judges in the Supreme Constitutional Court, which the assembly members agreed would be 11.

The court will also only have pre-emptive constitutional oversight over election and political participation bills and will not be able to rule any of these laws constitutional after they are signed into law.

With the assembly done with finalising the system of governance in the draft constitution, it is now almost done with the entire draft and will get ready to put it to referendum, despite 21 members resigning over the past week.

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