Chapter Five The National AssemblyArticle 81
The National Assembly of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan as the highest legislative organ is the manifestation of the will of its people and represents the whole nation.
Every member of the National Assembly takes into judgment the general welfare and supreme interests of all people of Afghanistan at the time of casting their vote.Article 82
The National Assembly consists of two houses: Wolesi Jirga (the House of People) and Meshrano Jirga. (House of Elders)
No one can become member of both houses simultaneously.Article 83
Members of the Wolesi Jirga are elected by the people through free, general, secret, and direct elections.
Their mandate ends on the 1st of Saratan of the fifth year after the elections, and the new assembly starts its work.
The election of the members of the Wolesi Jirga shall be held within 30 to 60 days before the expiry of the term of the Wolesi Jirga.
The number of members of the Wolesi Jirga, proportionate to the population of each region, shall be between two hundred and twenty, and two hundred and fifty.
Electoral constituency and other related issues shall be determined by election laws.
In the election law measures should be adopted for so the election system shall provide general and just representation for all the people of the country, and at least one female delegate should be elected from each province.Article 84
Members of the Meshrano Jirga are elected and appointed as follows:
1. From among the members of each provincial council, the respective council elects one person for a period of four years.
2. From among the district councils of each province, the respective councils elect one person for a period of three years. 3. The President from among experts and experienced personalities appoints the remaining one-third of the members for a period of five years.
The president appoints 50% of these people from among women.
A person, who is appointed as a member of the Meshrano Jirga, shall relinquish his membership in the respective council, and another person replaces him in accordance with the law.Article 85
A person who is nominated or appointed as a member of the National Assembly should have the following qualifications in addition to those considered by voters.
1. Should be the citizen of Afghanistan, or has obtained the citizenship of the state of Afghanistan at least ten years before becoming a candidate.
2. Should not have been convicted by a court for committing a crime against humanity, a crime, or sentenced of deprivation of his civil rights.
3. Members of Wolesi Jirga should be Twenty Five years old at the date of candidacy, and members of the Meshrano Jirga should be Thirty Five years old at the date of candidacy or appointment.Article 86
Credentials of members of the National Assembly are reviewed by independent commission for supervision of the elections in accordance with law.Article 87
In the beginning of the legislative period, each one of the two houses elects one of its members as the Chairperson, and two people as the first and second Vice Chairperson, and two people as the secretary and assistant secretary for a period of one year.
These individuals constitute the administrative board in their respective houses.
The duties of the administrative boards are determined in the regulations pertaining to the internal duties of each house.Article 88
Each house of the National Assembly sets up commissions to study the topics under discussion in accordance with its internal regulations.Article 89
The Wolesi Jirga has the authority to set up a special commission if one-third of its members put forward a proposal to inquire about and study government actions.
The composition and procedure of this commission is specified in the internal regulations of Wolesi Jirga.Article 90
The National Assembly has the following authorities:
1. Ratification, modification, or abrogation of laws and or legislative decrees.
2. Approval of plans for economic, social, cultural, and technological development.
3. Approval of state budget, permission for obtaining, and granting loans.
4. Creation, modification of administrative units.
5. Ratification of international treaties and agreements, or abrogation of the membership of Afghanistan to them.
6. Other authorities specified in this Constitution.Article 91
Wolesi Jirga has the following special authorities:
1. Deciding on interpellation of each of the ministers in accordance with the provisions of article 92 of this constitution.
2. Taking the final decision about the state's development programs and state budget, in case of a disagreement between the Wolesi Jirga and the Meshrano Jirga.
3. Approval of the appointments according to the provisions of this constitution.Article 92
Wolesi Jirga, based on a proposal by one-tenth of all members, can interpellate each of the Ministers.
If the responses given are not satisfactory, Wolesi Jirga shall consider the issue of vote of no confidence.
Vote of no confidence on a Minister should be explicit, direct, and on the basis of well founded reasons.
This vote should be approved by a majority of all members of the Wolesi Jirga.Article 93
Any commission of both Houses of the National Assembly can question each of the Ministers about specific topics.
The person questioned can provide verbal or written response.Article 94
Law is what both Houses of the National Assembly approve and the President endorses unless this Constitution states otherwise.
In case the President does not agree to what the National Assembly approves, he can send the document back with justifiable reasons to the Wolesi Jirga within fifteen days of its submission.
With the passage of this period or in case the Wolesi Jirga approves a particular case again with a majority of two-thirds votes, the bill is considered endorsed and enforced.Article 95
Proposal for the promulgation of a law can be initiated by the government, or members of the National Assembly, and in the domain of regulating the judicial affairs through the Supreme Court by the government.Article 96
Proposal for budget and financial affairs are initiated only by the government.Article 97
Proposals for promulgation of law initiated by the government are submitted first to the Wolesi Jirga.
If a proposal for the promulgation of law includes imposition of new taxes or reduction in state incomes, it is included in the working agenda on condition that an alternative source is also envisioned.
The Wolesi Jirga approves or rejects the proposal of the promulgation of law including budget and financial affairs and the proposal of taking or giving loan after discussion as a whole.
The Wolesi Jirga cannot delay the proposal more than one month.
The proposed draft of law is submitted to the Meshrano Jirga, after its approval by the Wolesi Jirga.
The Meshrano Jirga decides on the draft within a period of fifteen days
The National Assembly shall give priority to the promulgation of laws, treaties, and development plans of the government that require argent consideration and decision as per the request of the government.
If a proposal for promulgation of law is initiated by ten members of one of the two Houses and then approved by one fifth members of the respective houses, it can be admitted to the agenda of the respective houses.Article 98
The state budget and development plan of the government is submitted through the Meshrano Jirga along with an advisory comments to the Wolesi Jirga.
The decision of the Wolesi Jirga, irrespective of the consent of the Meshrano Jirga, is enforceable after it is signed by the President.
If for some reasons the budget is not approved before the beginning of the new fiscal year, the budget of the year before is applied until the approval of the new budget.
The government is obligated to give to the Wolesi Jirga the budget of the new fiscal year and a brief account of the current year's budget within the forth quarter of the fiscal year.
The definite account of the previous fiscal year shall be submitted by the government to the Wolesi Jirga within six months of the new year, in accordance with the provisions of law.
Wolesi Jirga cannot delay the approval of the budget for more than one month or permission to give or take loan for more than a 15 days.
If during this period Wolesi Jirga does not take any decision with regards to taking or giving loan, the proposal will be considered as approved.Article 99
If, during a session of the National Assembly, the annual budget or a developmental plan or an issue related to public security, territorial integrity, and the country's independence is under discussion, the session of the assembly cannot end before the approval of the matter.Article 100
In case the decision of one house is rejected by another house, a combined committee composed of equal members of each house is formed to resolve the disagreement.
The decision of the committee is enforced after its approval by the President.
In case the combined committee cannot solve the disagreement, the defeated resolution is considered void. And, if the resolution is approved by the Wolesi Jirga, it can be approved in the next session of the Wolesi Jirga by the majority of its members.
This approval is assumed as enforceable, after it is signed by the President, without submission to the Meshrano Jirga.
In case the disagreement between the two houses is over legislations involving financial affairs, and the combined committee is not able to resolve it, the Wolesi Jirga can approve the draft by the majority vote of its members.
This draft is assumed as enforceable without submission to the Meshrano Jirga after it is signed by the President.Article 101
No member of the National Assembly is legally prosecuted due to expressing his views while performing his duty.Article 102
When a member of the National Assembly is accused of a crime, the law enforcement authority informs the house, of which the accused is member, about the case, and the accused member can be prosecuted.
In case of an evident crime, the law enforcement authority can legally pursue and arrest the accused without the permission of the house, which the accused is a member of.
In both cases, when legal prosecution requires detention of the accused, law enforcement authorities are obligated to inform the respective house, about the case immediately.
If the accusation takes place when the assembly is in recess, the permission of arrest is obtained from the administrative board of the respective house and the decision of this board is presented to the first session of the aforementioned house for a decision.Article 103
The ministers can participate in the sessions of each one of the two houses of the National Assembly.
Each house of the National Assembly can demand the participation of Ministers to take part in its session.Article 104
Both houses of the National Assembly hold their sessions separately at the same time.
Under the following circumstances, both houses can hold joint sessions:
1. When the legislative session, or the annual session is inaugurated by the President.
2. When it is deemed necessary by the President.
In this case the head of the Wolesi Jirga, chairs the joint session of the National Assembly.Article 105
The sessions of the National Assembly are open unless the Chairman of the assembly, or at least ten members of the National Assembly request their secrecy and the assembly accepts this request.
No one shall enter the building of the National Assembly by force.Article 106
The quorum of the sessions of each house of the National Assembly for voting is complete with the presence of the majority of the members, and its decisions are taken with the majority of the members present, unless this Constitution states otherwise.Article 107
The National Assembly convenes two ordinary sessions each year.
The term of the National Assembly in each year is nine months.
When necessary, the assembly can extend this period.
Extraordinary sessions of the assembly during recess can take place by the order of the President.Article 108
In cases of death, resignation and dismissal of a member of the Wolesi Jirga, and/or disability or handicap, which prevents performance of duties permanently, election in the related constituency is held for a new representative for the rest of the legislative period, in accordance with the law.
In the above-mentioned situations, a new member of the Meshrano Jirga shall be appointed in accordance with Article 87 of this Constitution.
Matters involving the presence or absence of members of the National Assembly are regulated according to internal rules.Article 109
Proposals for amendments of the electoral law cannot be included in the working agenda of the assembly during the last year of the legislative period.