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Census law amended against Constitution: MPs

Census law amended against Constitution: MPs

Jan 20, 2018 - 19:44

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): Some lawmakers on Saturday termed the joint parliamentary committee’s decision amending the population census law as ‘against the Constitution’.

One-hundred and fifteen lawmakers thought a letter have demanded the president cancel the joint panel’s decision on the law.

In the letter, the president has been asked to invalidate the amendment as it was approved by the joint commission under pressure from the Wolesi Jirgainfo-icon’s administrative board.

The lawmakers have said the amendment could not be included in the lower house agenda due to continuous absence of lawmakers. The lawmakers asked the president to implement the previous version of the law.

The Article 6 of the census law was amended during a meeting of the law committee of the Cabinet ministers chaired by second VP Sarwar Danish and electronic ID cards project would be started after its approval by the parliament, Danish’s office had said a statement.

Serial number, name, last name, father’s name, grandfather’s name, date of birth, place of birth, current address, permanent address, location, photo and signature in national ID card are required under the Article 6.

“Criticism on this article had brought to a halt the issuance of ID cards and implementation of the law, so the government consulted different social, civil and political groups to resolve the issue and enforce the law,” Danish was quoted as commenting on the amendment.

Under the relevant law, if one House rejects the decision of the other, a joint commission comprised of an equal number of members from each House is formed to solve the difference.

The decision of the joint commission, after endorsement by the President, shall be enforced. If the joint commission does not solve the difference, the decision shall be considered rejected.

In such a situation, the House of People shall pass it with two-thirds majority in its next session. This decision, without submission to the House of Elders, shall be promulgated once endorsement by the President.

Earlier, Lower House speaker Abdul Rauf Ibrahimi had termed the decision of the joint commission as ‘legal’ and said the issue had been shared in the meeting of the heads of commissions, but insufficient votes led to excluding the subject from the agenda.

He added 75 members of the house had demanded the issue not to be made part of the agenda while 56 lawmakers demanded the subject to be made part of the agenda.

The controversial census law has recently landed in Parliament with a presidential legislative decree amending the Article six of the law, but the Wolesi Jirga again disapproved it, while the Mesharano Jirga has approved the law.

For a unanimous decision, a joint commission of the two houses held discussion and approved the law which was then sent to the President for endorsement.



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