Constitutional reforms in Nagorno-Karabakh propose reshaping president’s role

16:14 • 16.08.16



Nagorno-Karabakh’s amended Constitution bill, published by the country’s National Assembly earlier today, proposes a unique model ensuring a co-existence between the parliamentary and presidential governments.

 

According to a concept enclosed to the basic document, the preferred model should be anchored on the key principles of a presidential government, highlighting at the same time the parliamentary counterbalances’ active role.


Such a model would raise the president's accountability to the parliament to be formed by himself or herself. The parliamentary majority will then be vested with the mandate to impeach the president, the move potentially entailing the legislative’s dissolution. Whenever the president decides to dissolve the National Assembly, he or she will have to step down, necessitating a new presidential election.

 

“A fundamental advantage of such a system is that the authority to elect the cabinet will be vested in the people as opposed to political parties [whose decisions are normally made] behind the scenes. It is often the accepted practice in multi-party countries. On the other hand, it helps resolve the controversies between the cabinet and parliament, which is often one of the weakest points in a presidential system. With both being entitled to suspend one another’s authority provided they also lay down theirs, the opposing majorities’ problem will thus be resolved through a vote of no-confidence or a decision to dissolve the parliament,” reads the document.  

Under the proposed draft, the president, elected directly through general elections, will head the cabinet of ministers. Presidential and parliamentary elections will be conducted on the same day.

 

In the event the president’s seat remains vacant (due to the expiry of his/her term in office), the National Assembly will be vested with the authorities of the latter.

 

The president will have the power to dissolve the National Assembly.

 

Presidential contenders may be proposed only by political parties running in parliamentary elections.


The president will have the power to appoint or sack ministers. He or she will also have the right to veto (which can be repealed only by the National Assembly in case of a majority of votes).

 

Based on a decision by the country’s Supreme Court, the National Assembly will have the right to impeach the president (with 2/3 majority of votes) for crimes such as high treasons or other serious offenses.

 

The amendments on agenda do not allow the president two run for office for more than two consecutive terms. The bill also proposes that the proportional representation system be the only procedure for electing the legislative.  

Tigranuhi Martirosyan





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