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Wolesi Jirga passes new draft law on presidential decrees

Wolesi Jirga passes new draft law on presidential decrees

Jun 22, 2016 - 17:14

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): The Wolesi Jirgainfo-icon or lower house of parliament on Wednesday passed an eight-article draft law barring the president from issuing legislative decrees on issues already covered in existing laws.

The national assembly also declared it could not include the presidential legislative decree on electoral reforms in its last year’s agenda.

Qazi Nazir Ahmad Hanifi, who heads the lower house justice commission, said the draft had been prepared and approved to stop wasting the house’s precious time.

He said the house had rejected more than 10 presidential decrees last year because they were against the existing laws and wasted three months of parliament’s time.

He said the newly-approved draft was interpretation of the Article 79 of the Constitution, which said the government could issue legislative decrees only in emergency situation.

“During the recess of the House of Representatives, the Government shall, in case of an immediate need, issue legislative decrees, except in matters related to budget and financial affairs.”

“Legislative decrees, after endorsement by the President, shall acquire the force of law. Legislative decrees shall be presented to the National Assembly within thirty days of convening its first session, and if rejected by the National Assembly, they become void.”  

Some lawmakers believed the new draft’s approval would curtail powers of the president, but others said it might not impact the president’s powers.

The lawmakers discussed other issues as well. Abdul Wadud Paiman from Kunduz province said there were reports regarding the fifth column, a group of individuals working against the interest of Afghanistan for foreign countries. “After the capture of Qari Zahir, the reports are proved to be true.”

“Don’t try to protect Andarabi, police chief of Maidan Waradak province and let every traitor and criminal be punished,” he told the lawmakers.

Saleh Saleh, a lawmaker from Kunar province, said: “Individuals who sold weapons to the enemy of Afghanistaninfo-icon and helped them should be interrogated and no one should come to their rescue.”

Niamatullah Ghafari, 2nd deputy speaker, said the house had summoned security officials to brief the MPs about the country’s overall security situation on Saturday.


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