Chapter II Legislative Power

 

Article 18 [National Parliament]
The people exercise the legislative power through a representative organ called National Parliament.

Article 19 [Election]
The members of the National Parliament are elected by universal, free, direct, and secret suffrage, according to the modalities and conditions determined by the Electoral Law.

Article 20 [Right to Vote]
An elector is every citizen possessing Tunisian nationality for at least five years and having attained at least twenty years of age.

Article 21 [Eligibility]
Any voter, born of a Tunisian father, who is at least twenty-five years of age on the day of submission of his candidacy, is eligible for election to the National Parliament.

Article 22 [Term, Re-Election]
The National Parliament is elected for a period of five years in the course of the last thirty days of its mandate.

Article 23 [Continuing Parliament]
In case of impossibility of proceeding with the elections during the designated time, because of war or imminent peril, the mandate of the National Parliament is extended by a law until the time it is possible to proceed with the elections.

Article 24 [Seat]
The seat of the National Parliament is established in Tunis or its environment. However, under exceptional circumstances, the National Parliament may hold its sessions in any other place of the territory of the Republic.

Article 25 [Responsibility]
Every deputy is the representative of the entire Nation.

Article 26 [Indemnity]
A deputy cannot be prosecuted, arrested, or tried for opinions expressed, proposals made, or acts carried out in the exercise of his mandate in the National Parliament.

Article 27 [Immunity]
No deputy can be arrested or prosecuted for the duration of his mandate for a crime or misdemeanor as long as the National Parliament has not lifed the immunity which covers him. However, in the event of flagrante delicto, arrest procedure is permitted, in such a case, the National Parliament is to be informed without delay. The detention of a deputy is suspended if the National Parliament so requests.

Article 28 [Legislation]
(1) The National Parliament exercises the legislative power. The presentation of legislation belongs equally to the President of the Republic and to the members of the National Parliament, priority being given to bills presented by the President of the Republic.

(2) The National Parliament may authorize the President of the Republic to issue decree-laws within a fixed time limit and for a specific purpose which must be submitted for ratification to the National Parliament upon expiration of that time limit.

(3) Organic and ordinary laws are passed by the National Parliament by absolute majority. A draft organic law may not be submitted for deliberation by the National Parliament until afer the expiration of a period of fifteen days from its filing.

(4) Laws considered to be of an organic charcter are those specified by Articles 4, 8, 9, 10, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70 and 71.

(5) The electoral law has the form of an organic law.

(6) The National Parliament votes on bills concerning financial laws and the regulation of the budget under the conditions stipulated in the organic law of the budget. The budget must be voted at the latest by December 31. If by that date the National Parliament has not made a decision, the provisions of the financial bill may be implemented by decree, in trimestrial renewable installments.

Article 29 [Sessions]
(1) The National Parliament meets each year in ordinary session which begins during the month of October and ends during the month of July.

(2) However, the first session of every legislature begins during the first fifteen days of November.

(3) During the vacation, the National Parliament may meet in extraordinary sessions on the request of the President or the majority of deputies.

Article 30 [Permanent Committees]
The National Parliament elects from among its members permanent committees, whose activity is pursued during the vacation of the National Parliament.

Article 31 [Decree-Laws During Vacation]
During the vacation of the National Parliament, the President of the Republic may, with the consent of the interested permanent committee, issue decree-laws which must be submitted to the ratification by the National Parliament during the next ordinary session.

Article 32 [Treaties]
Treaties do not have the force of law until after their ratification. Treaties duly ratified have an authority superior to laws.

Article 33 [Approval of Treaties]
The treaties are approved by law.

Article 34 [Legislative Competences]
Matters relating to the following are regulated in the form of laws:

- the general modalities of the application of the Constitution, other than those relative to organic laws;

- the creation of offices, public establishments, societies, or national enterprises;

- citizenship, the status of persons, and obligations;

- the procedure before different orders of jurisdiction;

- the determination of crimes and offences and the penalties which apply to them;

- amnesty;

- the basis and rate of taxes for the benefit of the State, except the delegation accorded to the President by the laws of finances and fiscal laws;

- the regime of the issuance of money;

- loans and financial obligations of the State;

- the fundamental guarantees accorded to civilian and military functionaries.

Article 35 [Legislative Competence About Principles]
The law determines the fundamental principles of:

- the regime of property and real rights;

- public health;

- labor law and social security.

Article 36 [Development]
The law approves the development plan. It authorizes the resources and charges of the State under conditions established by the organic law of the budget.