PALAU TO CONSIDER PARLIAMENTARY SHIFT

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By Nazario Rodriguez Jr.

KOROR (Palau Horizon, June 15) - At least three proposals have been introduced at Palau’s Second Constitutional Convention, calling for a shift from the country’s current form of government, modeled after the form of democracy found in the United States, to a parliamentary system similar to Britain’s Westminster System.

Constitutional Proposal 2-218 aims to vest the legislative powers in a unicameral National Congress and provide for a parliamentary system of government for the Republic of Palau.

The proposal, which was authored by Delegates Victorio Uherbelau and Frank Kyota, states that: "The legislative powers of the Republic of Palau (should be) vested in the parliamentary system of government."

The proposal was referred to the Committee on Legislature chaired by former Senate President Seit Andres.

Another proposal, No. 2-239, also introduced by Uherbelau and Kyota was referred to the Committee on Executive headed by former Vice President Sandra Pierantozzi.

It proposes "to vest the executive powers in the cabinet, and to provide for a parliamentary system of government for the Republic in place of the executive branch existing under the presidential system."

Uherbelau and Kyota also introduced Constitutional Proposal No. 2-246, which was referred to the Committee on Legislature. It would amend Article IX, Section 1 of the Constitution and establish a "unicameral house."

ConCon spokesman Bonifacio Basilius said these proposals should not be taken seriously since the existing system of government "looks beneficial" to the republic.

He said these proposals may be taken seriously in the next 20 years or so.

Delegate Hokkons Baules, for his part, introduced Constitutional Proposal No. 2-187, which aims to change the title of cabinet ministers to secretaries.

The proposal was referred to the Committee on General Provisions.

June 16, 2005

Marianas Variety: www.mvariety.com

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