The Constitutional Court rejects two thirds of the appeals submitted to it

The Constitutional Court rejects two thirds of the appeals submitted to it
The Constitutional Court rejects two thirds of the appeals submitted to it
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·  Ruling against five legislative provisions for being unconstitutional:

· Abdullah Ensour was late replying to one fourth of the constitutional appeals.

-  Senate and the House of Representatives’ speakers ignored referral decisions from court.

- 81% of the Court's judgments were lacking consensus

-  Replying in form exceeded 56% of the appeals.


After 16 years, a glimmer of hope leaked to Moayed Al-Majali. He was hoping  that  the Constitutional Court established in 2012, will end "the violation” of the election’s provisions to the Constitution, which its "infringement of the Jordanian rights” has long disturbed him.


Al-Majali, "44 years", has consistently appealed against the deputies’ mandate since 1997, when he was a student in the second year at the Faculty of Law, as then he appealed against the validity of all the deputies’ mandate, because of what he perceived was the unconstitutionality of the electoral law, but all his efforts failed.


With the formation of the court under the constitutional amendments in 2011, and its competence control over the constitutionality of the laws and regulations, Al-Majali, who is a legal researcher, appealed in October 2013 to the appeal court against MP Haytham Abu Khadeeja’s being elected to represent him in his electoral constituency.

Al-Majali attributed his appeal to the unconstitutionality of the electoral law, which has produced the success of Abu Khadeeja and  other MP’s, and which included substantial provisions what makes the results of the elections void.


Al-Majali’s appeal reached the Constitutional Court coming from the Court of Cassation, after all the necessary legal proceedings, by referring it from the appeal Court of Amman to the Court of Cassation.


In turn, the Court of Cassation found that the appeal is serious, because of the alleged unconstitutionality of the articles applied to the case, and conformed to the requirements for its referral to the Constitutional Court.


The appeal of the alleged unconstitutionality of the electoral law focused on discriminating against Jordanians on the basis of religion, race, clans, and sex, contrary to the principle of equality guaranteed in Article (6/1) of the Constitution. In addition, the law failed to include electoral constituencies in the provinces of Jerusalem, Nablus and Hebron, and allocating seats for each of them, despite the decision of disengagement between the two banks of the Jordan River, which was an administrative and not a constitutional separation.


The appeal included alleged discrimination against Jordanians on the basis of work, as the law prohibited members of the Gendarmerie, the General Intelligence, the Armed Forces and the Civil Defense for the right to vote.


After nearly four months, the Constitutional Court rejected on a technicality by a majority of six members out of nine the Al-Majali appeal, justifying that the appealed provisions are not applicable to the original case and not linked to it, and "the requirement for a referral to the Constitutional court has not been achieved, therefore the appeal of such texts is unacceptable legally" according to the court decision.

In contrast, the constitutional judges, Fahd Abu Alathem, and Mohammed Al-ghazweh, opposed the decision of the majority, and issued their decision declaring the unconstitutionality of the by-elections that took place on 10/9/2013, and the unconstitutionality of the distribution of the electoral constituencies’ agenda, and the distribution of seats in the Appendix of the Electoral Law No. 25 of 2012.


The text of their opposing decision was: "The distribution of the electoral constituencies’ agenda, and the distribution of seats are unconstitutional, which is a clear violation of the citizens' rights, and a violation of the provisions of the Constitution."


Lawyer Islam Al-Harhasheh, the lawsuit attorney sees that the court's formal response "is closer to a political than to the legal decision."


Muayyed Al-Majali says that "the Amman Court of Appeal which considered the case has the final say whether or not it is applicable to the case, and not the Constitutional Court."


The Constitutional Court surpassed the judiciary and the work of both the Appeal and the Cassation tribunals; this is strange, on what basis would the Constitutional Court discus the subject of the application of the texts in the lawsuit if it is not within its competence, which includes discussing the constitutionality of laws and regulations, according to lawyer Al-Harhasheh.


The spokesman of the Constitutional Court, Judge Ahmed Tbeishat replied that the decision of the Constitutional Court is correct 100%, and the court does not interfere in the work of the judiciary, and it is its right to verify the validity or invalidity of the referral decision, and this is the second phase of the control over the referral decision after having been considered by the Court of Cassation.


He continues, "If the referral decision is wrong, the Constitutional Court decides automatically not to consider the case."


This report reveals that the response of the Constitutional Court rejected two-thirds of the submitted appeals, since its establishment in 2012, of which 11 cases out of 16 were received, whereas it rejected on technical basis nine appeals, by an average amounted up to 56.3%.


Fifteen appeals out of 16 reached the court through indirect appeal through the trial courts, while the Senate and the Council of Ministers did not practice their right to allow direct appeal, unlike the House of Representatives who appealed once.


This report shows that the court invalidated five legislative texts for violating the constitution, since its establishment until the publication of this report.


The court issued three judgments out of the 16 rulings by a unanimous vote, concerning the control of the constitutionality of laws and regulations, the equivalent of 19% of its provisions.


This report reveals that the successive heads of the Senate Taher Masri, Abdul Raouf Rawabdeh, and Faisal al-Fayez did not respond to any of the referral decisions sent to them by the President of the Court, while former House of the Representatives speaker, Saad Srour, responded once at the referral decision.


In contrast, the report showed that the former Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour surpassed the legal limit set to respond to one fourth of the referral decisions sent to him by the court.



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