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House to discuss constitutional amendments on Wednesday

By Raed Omari - Apr 24,2016 - Last updated at Apr 24,2016

Cabinet members attend a Lower House session on Sunday (Petra photo)

AMMAN — Lower House Speaker Atef Tarawneh said Sunday that the Chamber will discuss the 2016 constitutional amendments in two morning and afternoon sessions on Wednesday.

Unlike the vote on other draft laws, every single constitutional amendment, according to Article 126 of the Constitution, is passed by a two-third majority of the members of each of the Senate and the Chamber of Deputies.

Constitutionally, the vote on amendments is taken by calling the names of Chamber members and not by raising hands as is the case with regular draft laws. 

Last week, the Cabinet endorsed amendments to five articles of the Constitution and referred them to the House with an urgency status note.

As reworded by the Council of Ministers, a new paragraph was added to Article 40 of the Constitution to read: “Despite what is stated in Paragraph A, the King shall exercise his powers individually and appoint the Crown Prince, the Regent, Senate president and members, and members of the Constitutional Court, president of the Higher Judicial Council, the army’s chairman of the Joint Chiefs-of-Staff and the General Intelligence Department and Gendarmerie Department directors.”

The Cabinet also reworded Article 50 of the Constitution, removing the death of the prime minister as one of the cases when the government has to immediately resign.

The amendments also changed Article 96 of the Constitution, extending the term of the House speaker to two calendar years instead of one.

The Council of Ministers removed a paragraph from Article 75 of the Constitution under which persons with a dual nationality are banned from becoming MPs, senators, ministers or senior officials.

On Tuesday, the House is scheduled to discuss its Financial Committee’s notes on the Audit Bureau’s reports for the years 2009 to 2012.

 

Also on Sunday, the House passed the 2015 amendments to the Central Bank of Jordan Law and referred the 2016 amendments to the Penal Code and the draft firearms and ammunition law to its legal committee for review. 

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