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Constitution of Algeria – 7: The Legislative Power

CHAPTER TWO
THE LEGISLATIVE POWER

Article 98
The legislative power shall be exercised by a Parliament composed of two chambers, the People’s National Assembly and the Council of the Nation. The Parliament shall prepare and adopt the legislation autonomously.

Article 99
The Parliament shall control the action of the government in the conditions specified by Articles 80, 84, 133 and 134 of the Constitution. The control referred to in Articles 135 and 137 of the Constitution shall be exercised by the People’s National Assembly.

Article 100
Within the framework of its constitutional powers the Parliament must remain faithful to the mandate of the people and remain in constant touch with their aspirations.

Article 101
The members of the People’s National Assembly shall be elected by universal, direct and secret suffrage.Two-thirds (2/3) of the members of the Council of the Nation shall be elected by indirect and secret suffrage from among and by the members of the Communal People’s Assemblies and by the People’s Assembly of the Wilaya. One-third (1/3) of the members of the Council of the Nation shall be designated by the President of the Republic from among the personalities and national elites in the scientific, cultural, professional, economic and social fields. The number of the members of the Council of the Nation shall be half, at the most, of the members of the People’s National Assembly. The modalities of the application of paragraph 2 above shall be determined by statute.

Article 102
The People’s National Assembly shall be elected for a term of five (5) years. The mandate of the Council of the Nation shall be fixed at six (6) years. The membership of the Council of the Nation shall be renewable by one-half (1/2) every three (3) years. The mandate of the Parliament cannot be extended save in exceptionally serious circumstances which disturb the normal election process. Such a situation is determined by a decision of a joint session of the chambers of Parliament convened upon proposal of the President of the Republic and in consultation with the Constitutional Council.

Article 103
The modalities of the election of the deputies and those relative to the election or designation of the members of the Council of the Nation, the conditions of eligibility and the terms of disqualifications and of incompatibilities applying to them shall be determined by Institutional Act.

Article 104
The validation of the mandates of the deputies and that of the members of the Council of the Nation shall fall within the competence of the respective chamber.

Article 105
The mandate of the deputy and of the member of the Council of the Nation shall be national. It shall be renewable and incompatible with any other mandate or function.

Article 106
The deputy or the member of the Council of the Nation who does not fulfill or no longer fulfills the conditions of eligibility shall forfeit his mandate.This forfeiture shall be decided in each case by the People’s National Assembly or the Council of the Nation by a majority of its members.

Article 107
The deputy or the member of the Council of the Nation shall be responsible to his peers who can revoke his mandate if he commits an act unworthy of his mission. The rules of procedure of each chamber shall establish the conditions in which a deputy or a member of the Council of the Nation may be excluded. The exclusion shall be declared in each case by a majority of the members of the People’s National Assembly or the Council of the Nation without prejudice to other sanctions under the general law.

Article 108
The conditions in which the Parliament accepts the resignation of one of its members shall be established by Institutional Act.

Article 109
Parliamentary immunity shall be granted to the deputies and to the members of the Council of the Nation during their time in Parliament. They may not be prosecuted or arrested, or in general be the object of any civil or criminal proceedings or pressures on account of the opinions expressed, the speeches delivered or the votes cast in the exercise of their mandate.

Article 110
A deputy or a member of the Council of the Nation may not be prosecuted for a crime or an offense unless he waives his parliamentary immunity or the prosecution is authorized, depending on the case, by either the People’s National Assembly or the Council of the Nation, which shall decide by a majority of its members on the lifting of the parliamentary immunity of its member.

Article 111
If caught in the act of committing an offense or a crime the deputy or member of the Council of the Nation may be arrested. The bureau of the People’s National Assembly or the Council of the Nation must be informed immediately. The competent bureau may demand the suspension of the prosecution and the release of the deputy or the member of the Council of the Nation; in this case the procedure provided for in Article 110 above shall apply.

Article 112
An Institutional Act shall determine the conditions of replacement of a deputy or a member of the Council of the Nation in case of vacancy of his seat.

Article 113
The legislature shall meet as of right on the tenth day following the election of the People’s National Assembly under the presidency of its oldest member assisted by the two youngest deputies. It shall proceed to the election of its bureau and the constitution of its commissions. The above provisions shall apply to the Council of the Nation.

Article 114
The President of the People’s National Assembly shall be elected for the term of the legislature. The President of the Council of the Nation shall be elected after every partial renewal of the membership of the Council.

Article 115
The organization and the functioning of the People’s National Assembly and of the Council of the Nation, as well as the working relations between the chambers of the Parliament and the Government, shall be determined by Institutional Act. The budget of the two chambers as well as the allowances of the deputies and the members of the Council of the Nation shall be determined by statute. The People’s National Assembly and the Council of the Nation shall draft and adopt their rules of procedure.

Article 116[18]
The meetings of the Parliament shall be public. A record of its proceedings shall be kept and be made available to the public in the conditions established by Institutional Act. The People’s National Assembly and the Council of the Nation may meet in closed session upon the request of their presidents, the majority of their members present, or the Prime Minister.

Article 117
The People’s National Assembly and the Council of the Nation shall establish permanent commissions within the framework of their rules of procedure.

Article 118[19]
The Parliament shall meet in two ordinary sessions each year, each with a minimum duration of four (4) months.The Parliament may meet in extraordinary session on the initiative of the President of the Republic. It may also be summoned by the President of the Republic on the request of the Prime Minister or the request of two-thirds (2/3) of the members of the People’s National Assembly. The closing of the extraordinary session shall take place when the Parliament has completed the agenda for which it was summoned.

Article 119[20]
Both the Prime Minister and the deputies shall have the right to initiate legislation. In order to be admissible Bills must be introduced by twenty (20) deputies. Bills shall be submitted to the Council of Ministers after the advice of the Conseil d’Etat and then be transmitted by the Prime Minister to the bureau of the People’s National Assembly.

Article 120[21]
In order to be adopted each Government Bill or Private Members’ Bill must be the object of deliberation successively by the People’s National Assembly and the Council of the Nation. Government Bills and Private Members’ Bills shall be debated by the People’s National Assembly in the form in which they have been tabled before it. The Council of the Nation shall debate the text which has been voted by the People’s National Assembly and shall adopt it by a majority of three-fourths (3/4) of its members.

In case of disagreement between the two chambers a joint committee, composed of members from the two chambers, shall be convened at the request of the Prime Minister to propose a text on the provisions still under debate. This text shall be submitted to the two chambers for approval by the Government; no amendment shall be admissible, except with the consent of the Government. In case of the persistence of the disagreement the text shall be withdrawn. The Parliament shall adopt the Finance Bill within a period of seventy-five (75) days, counting from the date of submission in conformity with the preceding paragraphs. In case of non-adoption within the specified period, the President of the Republic shall promulgate the Government Bill by way of ordinance. The other procedures shall be specified by the Institutional Act referred to in Article 115 of the Constitution.

Article 121
Any Bill which aims at or has the effect of decreasing public revenue or increasing public expenditure shall be inadmissible unless it is accompanied by measures which seek to increase the revenue of the State or to achieve savings at least equal in size on other items of public expenditure.

Article 122
The Parliament shall legislate on the subject matters assigned to it by the Constitution as well as the following fields:

  1. The fundamental rights and duties of persons, particularly the system of public liberties, the safeguarding of individual liberties, and the obligations of citizens;
  2. The general rules pertaining to personal status and family law and particularly to marriage, divorce, filiation, legal capacity and inheritance;
  3. The conditions of the establishment of persons;
  4. Basic legislation concerning nationality;
  5. General rules pertaining to the condition of foreigners;
  6. Rules concerning judicial organization and the creation of new categories of courts;
  7. General rules of criminal law and criminal procedure and particularly the determination of crimes and misdemeanors, the institution of the corresponding penalties of any kind, amnesty, extradition and the penitentiary regime;
  8. The general rules of civil procedure and the execution of judgments;
  9. The system of civil and commercial obligations and property;
  10. The territorial division of the country;
  11. The adoption of the national plan;
  12. The vote of the State budget;
  13. The introduction of the base and rates of taxes, contributions, duties and fees of every kind;
  14. The customs system;
  15. The general regulations concerning the issuing of money, the banking regime, credit and insurance;
  16. General rules relating to education and scientific research;
  17. General rules relating to public health and the population;
  18. General rules relating to the right to work, social security, and the exercise of the right to establish trade unions;
  19. General rules relating to the environment, the standard of life and land management;
  20. General rules relating to the protection of the fauna and flora;
  21. The protection and safeguarding of the cultural and historic heritage;
  22. The general system of forests and pasture lands;
  23. The general water system;
  24. The general system of mines and hydrocarbons;
  25. Real estate;
  26. The fundamental guarantees accorded to public officials and the general statute of Public Service;
  27. The general rules relative to National Defense and the use of the Armed Forces by civil authorities;
  28. The rules governing the transfer of property from the public to the private sector;
  29. The setting up of categories of legal entities;
  30. The creation of decorations, distinctions and honorific titles of the State.

Article 123
In addition to the matters reserved by the Constitution for regulation by Institutional Act the following matters shall be subject to regulation by Institutional Act:

  • the organization and functioning of the public authorities;
  • the electoral system;
  • the Political Parties Act;
  • the Information Act;
  • the status of judges and prosecutors and the judicial organization;
  • the framework legislation concerning Finance Bills;
  • the National Security Act.

The Institutional Act shall be adopted by absolute majority of the deputies and threequarters (3/4) of the members of the Council of the Nation. It shall be submitted for review of its conformity to the Constitutional Council before
its promulgation.

Article 124
In case of the non-functioning of the People’s National Assembly or in the periods between parliamentary sessions, the President of the Republic may legislate by ordinance. The President of the Republic shall submit the texts adopted by him to the approval of each of the chambers of Parliament at their next session. Ordinances not adopted by the Parliament shall be void.

In case of a state of emergency defined in Article 93 of the Constitution, the President of the Republic may legislate by ordinances. The ordinances shall be adopted in the Council of Ministers.

Article 125[22]
Matters other than those reserved to statutory legislation shall fall within the regulatory power of the President of the Republic. The implementation of the laws shall be a matter for the regulatory power of the Prime Minister.

Article 126
The Act of Parliament shall be promulgated by the President of the Republic within thirty (30) days counted from the date of its transmittal. However, when an Act has been submitted to the Constitutional Council before its promulgation by one of the authorities referred to in Article 166 below, this time limit shall be suspended until the Constitutional Council gives its ruling in the conditions specified in Article 167 below.

Article 127
The President of the Republic may ask for the re-opening of the parliamentary debate on an Act voted by Parliament within thirty (30) days following its adoption. In that case, a majority of two-thirds (2/3) of the members of the People’s National Assembly shall be required for the adoption of the Act.

Article 128
The President of the Republic can direct a message to the Parliament.

Article 129[23]
After consulting the President of the People’s National Assembly, the President of the Council of the Nation and the Prime Minister, the President of the Republic can decide on the dissolution of the People’s National Assembly or on anticipated legislative elections.In both cases legislative elections must take place within a maximum limit of three (3) months.

Article 130
Upon request of the President of the Republic or one of the Presidents of one of the two chambers, the Parliament may initiate a debate on foreign policy. This debate can be concluded with a resolution of the Parliament meeting in joint session of the two chambers, which shall be communicated to the President of the Republic.

Article 131
Armistice accords, treaties of peace, of alliances and union, treaties relating to the borders of the State as well as treaties concerning the status of person and those which involve expenditures not foreseen in the budget of the State shall be ratified by the President of the Republic after explicit approval by each of the two chambers of Parliament.

Article 132
The treaties ratified by the President of the Republic in the conditions specified by the Constitution shall prevail over Acts of Parliament.

Article 133
The members of Parliament can ask the Government to explain its action on matters of current concern. The commissions of Parliament may hear the members of the Government.

Article 134
The members of Parliament may address orally or in written form any question to any member of the Government. The written question must receive a reply in the same form within a maximum period of thirty (30) days. The oral questions shall require a response in the session. If one of the two chambers believes that the oral or written response by the member of the Government justifies it, a debate shall be opened in the conditions specified in the rules of procedure of the People’s National Assembly and the Council of the Nation. The questions and answers are published in accordance with the same conditions as the records of the parliamentary debates.

Article 135
On the occasion of the debate on the general policy declaration, the People’s National Assembly can hold the Government to account by voting a motion of censure. Such a motion is not admissible unless it is signed by at least a seventh (1/7) of the number of deputies.

Article 136
The motion of censure must be approved by a majority vote of two-thirds (2/3) of the deputies. The vote may only take place three (3) days after the tabling of the motion of censure.

Article 137[24]
When the motion of censure is approved by the People’s National Assembly, the Prime Minister must tender the resignation of his government to the President of the Republic.

 

[18] The term “Prime Minister” was substituted for “Head of Government” by Article 13 of Constitutional Act No. 08-19 of November 15, 2008.
[19] The term “Prime Minister” was substituted for “Head of Government” by Article 13 of Constitutional Act No. 08-19 of November 15, 2008.
[20] The term “Prime Minister” was substituted for “Head of Government” by Article 13 of Constitutional Act No. 08-19 of November 15, 2008.
[21] The term “Prime Minister” was substituted for “Head of Government” by Article 13 of Constitutional Act No. 08-19 of November 15, 2008.
[22] The term “Prime Minister” was substituted for “Head of Government” by Article 13 of Constitutional Act No. 08-19 of November 15, 2008.
[23] The term “Prime Minister” was substituted for “Head of Government” by Article 13 of Constitutional Act No. 08-19 of November 15, 2008.
[24] The term “Prime Minister” was substituted for “Head of Government” by Article 13 of Constitutional Act No. 08-19 of November 15, 2008.

Next: Chapter 8- The Judicial Power

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