Written by Staff Writer
29 Apr, 2015 | 8:36 pm
The significance of the 19th Amendment to the constitution is the curtailing of the powers of the Executive Presidency.
News1st takes a look at the fundamental changes that have been made with the new amendment.
One of the major changes made by the 19th Amendment is the establishment of the constitutional council, which in turn will re-establish the independent commissions.
The amendment will curtail the president’s powers in making appointments to major government institutions.
The establishment of a constitutional council and independent commissions through the 17th Amendment to the Constitution was weakened by adopting the 18th Amendment to the Constitution.
The 19th Amendment to the Constitution will repeal the 18th Amendment while replacing the now defunct 17th Amendment to establish the independent commissions.
The Constitutional Council will comprise of seven persons representing Parliament including the Speaker, the Prime Minister and the Opposition Leader as well as three other professionals.
The 19th Amendment to the Constitution will establish the commissions pertaining to the elections, state services, national police, audit services, human rights , investigate allegations of bribery or corruption, finance, national policy planning and university grants.
The powers that were vested with the president on making appointments to the aforementioned commissions as well as to appointing judges to the Supreme Courts have been distributed amongst the constitutional council and the commissions.
According to the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, the President’s term will be limited to five years while a president can only serve for two terms.
The president can only dissolve parliament four and a half year after the house of legislature has been elected.
The powers vested with the president on removing the Prime Minister have been abolished and replaced by the passing of a no confidence motion or the defeat of a budget.
However, the president will continue to serve as the head of the Cabinet and will be considered as a cabinet minister.
The new constitutional amendments note that the composition of the Cabinet of Ministers and their respective subjects will be decided by the president seeking the advice of the prime minister.
Also of significance in the 19th Amendment to the Constitution is that the Right to Information has been accepted as a Fundamental Right.
In addition, the audit process has been expanded and companies with over 51 percent of shares held by the government will come under the registration of companies act, paving way for an audit.
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