DRAFT CONSTITUTION OF THE REPUBLIC OF ALBANIA - February 1995


PART THREE -- HIGH STATE ORGANS

CHAPTER I - THE PARLIAMENT

Article 58

Role and Structure

1. The Legislative power is exercised only by a Parliament [Variant II - by the National Assembly], which consist of one chamber, with not less than 140 members.
2. Not less than one hundred members shall be elected according to the majoritarian system, but in any case each district shall contain at least one electoral zone.
3. The remaining seats shall be distributed to the parties in proportion to the votes won on a national scale in the first round of voting.

Article 59

1. Parliament is elected for four years.
2. The mandate may be extended with the approval of the President of the Republic, only in a case of war or a state of emergency and so long as those circumstances continue.
3. The elections for the new Parliament shall take place not later than 60 days form the date of the end of the mandate or the dissolution of the prior Parliament.
4. The mandate of Parliament continues until the first meeting of the new Parliament.

Article 60

Sessions

1. Parliament is called to its first meeting by the President of the Republic, not later than 20 days from the conclusion of the elections.
2. Parliament conducts its annual works in two sessions. The first session begins on the third Monday of January, and the second session begins on the first Monday of September.
3. Parliament meets in special session when called by the President of the Republic, the Prime Minister or one third of the deputies.

Article 61

Conditions for Being Elected Deputy

Every Albanian citizen with a permanent residence in Albania for at least the two pervious years may be elected a deputy.

Article 62

Incompatibility of Being a Deputy with other Functions

1. Being a deputy is not compatible with any other state or private function.
2. A deputy who is named minister shall be replaced while he holds that office.

Article 63

Boundaries Representative of a Deputy

A deputy represents the whole people and is not connected to any obligatory mandate.

Article 64

Immunity of a Deputy

1. A deputy is not responsible for a vote given nor for opinions expressed during the performance of his function.
2. A deputy may not be criminally prosecuted or arrested without the authorization of Parliament. He may be detained without authorization only when he is caught in the act of committing of a serious crime.

Article 65

Internal Organization

1. Parliament elect its chairmen.
2. Parliament creates from its ranks standing committees, and ad hoc committees.
3. Parliament functions according to the rules approved by it.

Article 66

Functioning

1. Meetings of Parliament are open. On the request of the President of the Republic, the Prime Minister or one fifth of the deputies, meetings of Parliament may be closed, when a majority of all deputies have voted for this.
2. Meetings of Parliament open when a majority of deputies is present.
3. Parliament makes decisions by a majority of the deputies present, except for cases provided otherwise by this Constitution.

Article 67

Legislative Competency

1. Parliament issues laws that it considers necessary and appropriate to realize the power recognized to it by the Constitution.

Article 68

Legislative Initiative

1. The Government, every deputy and 20.000 electors have the right to purpose laws.
2. The proposal of laws that have financial effects may be done only by the Government or with its consent.
3. A proposal for a referendum may be made by the Government, by a group of 10 deputies as well as by 30.000 electors.

Article 69

Procedure of Voting Laws

1. A draft law shall be voted on not less than twice.
2. Parliament may specify in its rules a different procedure for voting on particular draft laws.
3. Not less than three days must elapse between one vote and another.

Article 70

Promulgation of Law

1. A law is considered promulgated when within 15 days from its presentation to the President of the Republic, he has not exercised a veto.
2. A law becomes effective on the passage of not less than ten days from its publication in the Official Journal.
3. In cases of a state of emergency or war, when Parliament makes a decision by two thirds of its members and the President of the Republic gives his consent, a law may become effective immediately, but only by public notification. The law must be printed in the first number of the Official Journal.

Article 71

The Right to Veto Laws

1. The President of the Republic has the right to return a law to Parliament for re-examination only once, with a reasoned message.
2. The veto of the President may be overturned when more than half of the whole number of deputies have voted against him.

Article 72

Approval of the Budget and the Consultative Budget

1. The Prime Minister in the name of the Government shall present a draft law on the budget at the beginning of the fall session, which may not close without approving it. If the draft law does not succeed in being approved by the beginning of the next fiscal year, the Government shall implement the budget of the prior year until the budget is approved.
2. During the first session of the following year, the Government is obliged to present to Parliament for examination and approval of expenses of the past year.
3. No expense may be authorized other than by law.
4. Taxes and duties shall be fixed by law and only for public purposes.

Article 73

Other Competences of Parliament

1. By law, ratifies treaties that have a political or military character or entail changes in the laws, grants amnesty, declares partial or general mobilization, a state of war and a state of emergency, and decides on the holding of popular referenda.
2. Parliament approves the composition of the Defense Council, on the proposal of the Prime Minister.

CHAPTER II - THE PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC

Article 74

Position of the President and Personal Requirements

1. The President of Republic is the head of State and represents the unity of people.
2. Only an Albanian citizen with a residence for not less than the previous ten years, and who has reached the age of 40, may elected President.

Article 75

Election of the President

1. Every candidate for President shall be proposed to Parliament by a group of no less than thirty deputies. A deputy is not permitted to take part in more one of the groups proposing candidates for President.
2. The President of Republic is elected by Parliament by secret vote and by a majority of two-thirds majority of the votes of all deputies. When this majority is not reached, a second round shall take place, in which the President is elected by an absolute majority of all deputies.
3. When the required majority is not reached in the second round either, a third round of voting shall take place, in which also the President is elected by an absolute majority of all deputies.
4. If the required majority is not reached even after the third round, Parliament shall dissolve.
5. The new Parliament elects the President of the Republic by an absolute majority of all deputies.
6. From one vote to another, in the two legislatures, not less than three days must pass.

Article 76

Mandate of the President

1. The President of Republic is elected for five years with the right of re-election only once.
2. The election of a new President shall take place no later than 30 days after the conclusion of the mandate.
3. The mandate of President may be extended only when Parliament cannot meet because of war or a state of emergency.
4. After he is elected by Parliament, President of Republic takes an oath before Parliament and starts his duties, but not before the mandate of the President who is leaving has ended.

Article 77

Incompatibility with Other Duties.

The President of the Republic may not perform any other public, party or private function and may not take part in any party.

Article 78

Discharge of the President

1. The President of Republic is not responsible for acts performed in the exercise of his duty except for serious violation of the Constitution or for the commission of serious crimes. .
2. The discharge of the President for this cases must be requested by not less than one quarter of the deputies and decided by not less than two thirds of them.

Article 79

Replacement of the President

1. In the case of the President's discharge, death, serious illness that makes him incapable of exercising his duty or the resignation, the Chairman of Parliament takes his place and exercise his competencies, except for dissolving Parliament.
2. The election of the President in these cases shall take place with 20 days.

Article 80

Dissolution of Parliament

On the proposal of the Prime Minister, the President may dissolve Parliament, when the absence of a majority does not permit the parliament to exercise its functions and makes the governing of the country impossible.

Article 81

Competencies of the President.

1. The President of the Republic:
1.1. Exercises the right of pardon;
1.2. Grants citizenship and permits it to be given up, according to law;
1.3. Awards decorations and honorary titles.
1.4. Awards high military grades;
1.5. Sets the date of elections for Parliament and for the organs of local power;
1.6. Names and discharges, on the proposal of the Prime Minister, high executive officials, except when otherwise specified by law;
1.7. Declares a state of emergency or war when it is impossible for Parliament to meet.
1.8. Declares partial or general mobilization;
1.9. Has command of the Armed Forces and chairs the Defense Council;
1.10. Sends messages to Parliament on the most important matters of state policy;
1.11. Signs treaties and international agreements with a political and military nature with the approval of Parliament;
1.12. Accredits diplomatic representatives of Albania and accepts the credentials and letters of appointment of the diplomatic representatives of foreign states.

Article 82

Countersignature of Acts of the President

The acts of the President are not valid without the countersignature of the Prime Minister or the respective ministers, except for the cases contemplated in point 1.10 of Article 81 and Articles 83 and 89.

CHAPTER III - THE GOVERNMENT

Article 83

Method of Formation

1. The executive power is exercised by the Government, which consist of the Prime Minister and the ministers.
2. At the beginning of the legislature or when the post is vacant, The Prime Minister is elected by Parliament on the proposal of the President of the Republic, starting with the candidate presented by the party that has the most seats in Parliament. At the same time, Parliament approves the program and structure of Government.
3. If three successive times the candidacies proposed do not succeed, the President shall dissolve the Parliament.
4. If the new Parliament does not accept the proposed candidacy either, Parliament itself elects the Prime Minister.

Article 84

Selection of Ministers and Oath of the Government.

1. The ministers are appointed and discharged by the President of the Republic on the proposal of the Prime Minister.
2. If the candidacies proposed by the Prime Minister are refused by the President, the third time the Prime Minister presents the proposal for approval to Parliament.
3. The Government starts its duties after taking the oath before the President of the Republic.

Article 85

Requirements, Incompatibility and Immunity

1. Anyone who has the capacities required for being a deputy may be named a minister.
2. The Prime Minister and the ministers may not carry other public or private function.
3. Ministers enjoy immunity and may nor criminally prosecuted without the authorization of the President of the Republic.

Article 86

Role of the Prime Minister

The Prime Minister represents the Government, directs the general policy of the state and controls the various branches of state administration.

Article 87

The Right of the Government to Issue Degree Laws

1. The government may issue decree-laws only after the governing principles and criteria have first been established by Parliament, and only for specified objects and for a limited time.
2. The Government may not issue decree-laws if Parliament has not delegated such a right.
3. When, for emergency cases or urgent needs, the Government issues, under its responsibility, a decree-law, it is obligated to present it that same day for approval in Parliament, and, if Parliament is not in session or has been dissolved, it shall be called and shall meet within 5 days.
4. A decree-law goes out of force if within sixty days from the date of issuance it has not been approved by Parliament. Parliament may regulate by law the judicial relations created by decree-laws that are not approved.

Article 88

Issuance of Administrative Acts

To carry out their functions, the Government or ministers shall issue administrative acts, which, when they have a normative character, shall be published in the Official Journal.

Article 89

Motions

1. If Parliament, by a majority of its members, approves a not confidence motion or does not accept a motion of confidence requested by the Prime Minister, the President if the Republic shall propose a new Prime Minister within 10 days.
2. If the new Prime Minister does not receive Parliament's vote of confidence either, the president shall dissolve the Parliament.

Article 90

Term of the Government

The Government continues in office until the oath of the new Government.

Article 91

Responsibility of the Prime Minister and the Minister

The Prime Minister is responsible and shall give an account before Parliament for the general policy of the Government, the ministers for their respective activity.

CHAPTER IV - THE JUDICIAL POWER

Article 92

Independence of the judicial Power

1. The judicial power is independent. It is exercised by the Supreme Court as well as other courts created by law.
2. Judges are subject only to Constitution and the laws in the exercise of their duties.
3. The judicial power has a separate budget, which it administers itself.
4. The term of judges may not be limited nor may their pay and privileges be lowered..

Article 93

The Supreme Court

1. The Supreme Court is the highest judicial authority. It consists of 9 judges, who are elected by Parliament on the proposal of the High Council of Justice, from among jurist of high professional competence and not less than 15 years of work experience..
2. Every two years, the judges of the Supreme Court select in rotation he Chairman of the Supreme Court.

Article 94

Discharge and Immunity of a Judge of the Supreme Court

1. A judge of the Supreme Court may be removed from office on the proposal of the High Council of Justice when a majority of all deputies have voted for it.
2. His removal from the office may be sought only if he has committed a criminal offense or is so sick that he is unable to carry out his duties.
3. Criminal prosecution of a judge of the Supreme Court may be permitted by Parliament by a majority of all deputies when requested by the General Prosecutor and only after the consent of the High Council of Justice has been obtained.

Article 95

The High Council of Justice

1. Other judges are named by the High Council of Justice
2. The High Council of Justice consists of the President of the Republic, who chairs it, the minister of Justice and nine members chosen for five years, respectively: four by the general Meeting of the judges of the Republic, three by the Chambers of Lawyers and two by a meeting of the pedagogues of the faculties of Justice.

The High Council of Justice decides on the disciplinary responsibility and transfer of judges.

The transfer of a judge may not be done without his consent.

Article 96

Immunity and Discharge of Other Judges

Judges may be criminally prosecuted or removed from office only by decision of the High Council of Justice. An appeal may be take against the decision to the Supreme Court.

Article 97

Application of the Constitution by Judges

In questions within their competency, judges may apply Constitutional provisions directly. These cases shall be examined obligatory by the Supreme Court, which shall render a majority of all its members.

Article 98

Reasoning and Publication of Supreme Court Decisions

1. Judicial decision must be reasoned.
2. The Supreme Court shall publish its decisions.

Article 99

Creation of Courts for particular Fields

Parliament may create courts for particular fields, but is no case a court for a specific question.

Article 100

Incompatibility with other Functions

Being a judge is not compatible with any other state or private function.

CHAPTER V - OFFICE OF THE PROSECUTOR

Article 101

Duty of the Office of the Prosecutor and the general prosecutor

1. The office of the prosecutor is the authority that carries out criminal prosecution.
2. The General Prosecutor and his deputies are appointed and discharged by the President of the Republic on the proposal of the Prime Minister.
3. The general Prosecutor enjoys immunity and may not be criminally prosecuted without the consent of the President of the Republic.

Article 102

Other Prosecutors

Other Prosecutors are appointed and discharged by the General prosecutor.

CHAPTER VI - THE CONSTITUTIONAL COURT

Article 103

Composition and Manner of Formation of Mandate

1. the Constitutional Court consist of 9 members, who are respectively three by Parliament, three by President of the Republic and three by general meeting of the judges, lawyers and pedagogues of the faculties of Justice.
2. Members of this Court must be jurists with high profesional competence and not less than 15 years work experience.
3. Every two years, the judges of the Constitutional Court select by rotation the chairman of the Constitutional Court.
4. The judges of the Constitutional Court hold office for 12 years with of re-election.
5. The term of three judges selected in the first election ends after four years. Their names shall be chosen by lot from each of the groups mentioned in point 1 of these Article. This procedure shall be repeated after four years with three other judges selected in the first election.

Article 104

Incompatibility with Other Functions

Membership on the Constitutional Court is not compatible with any other state or private function.

Article 105

Competencies

1. The Constitutional Court has in its competency:
1.1 To interpret the Constitution for disagreements about competencies between central organs as well as between central organs and local ones.
1.2 To give an expression about the compatibility of laws with the Constitution before they are promulgated, and also international agreements before they are ratified.
1.3 To give an expression about the compatibility of laws not yet promulgated with generally accepted norms of international laws and international agreements to which the Republic of Albania is a party.

Article 106

Starting Action

1. The Constitutional Court is put into action by the President, by the Government, by a group of no less than 7 deputies or by the local organs specified in Article 108 of this Constitution.
2. In this case, the law may not be promulgated in the time set by Article 70 of this Constitution.
3. The Constitutional Court must render a decision within 60 days from the day it is put into action.
4. With the passage of this time, the law is considered promulgated by itself.

Article 107

Decisions

1. When the Constitutional Court renders a decision on the incompatibility of one of the above documents with the Constitution, Parliament shall examine the document one more time within two months, otherwise it remains invalid.
2. Parliament may decline to accept a decision of the Constitutional Court by a majority of two-thirds of all the deputies.
3. When the Constitutional Courts gives an expression in favor of the content of a law, the law is considered promulgated immediately, but not before the time for the veto of the President of the Republic contemplated by article 70 has passed. Variant II - when the Constitutional Court renders a decision on the incompatibility of one of above documents, the document is annulled. The decision of the Constitutional Court is final.
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