Tuesday, 11 December 2018

Demand Six - A Constitutional Convention

Our last demand is that a constitutional convention should be set up to produce a codified constitution which would be put to us, the people, for our approval.

The aim of having a written constitution, for the first time in our history, would be to update our existing system and of course incorporate all the details of the first five demands in it.

A constitution should be directed primarily at governments and states agencies. Strictly speaking, it should be limited to defining the extent of their powers and the manner in which they shall be exercised. It can read alongside a Bill of Rights, and individual rights can be enshrined in a constitution, although separate documents might be preferable. 

Nevertheless if we are to have our own constitution, it must be produced by the people. Those who frame a constitution have to be the sovereign entity. The very fact that the people lay down the rules under which governments must operate is de facto recognition of their sovereignty.

We would also need a constitutional court as protector with the power to strike down any law or action of government that was unconstitutional but the ultimate protector should be the sovereign people who should be able to strike out any law or impost, such as a treaty, they deem unconstitutional.

We believe this demand should be addressed to a reformed Parliament, one in which the executive has been excluded and then put to the people in a referendum for approval.

As to the content, shape or form we offer no opinions save that we expect substantial amendments to the existing constitution.

In summary we call for a properly constituted convention, one that is capable of deliberating relevant issues in an inclusive manner, and which will put the fruits of its work to the people for approval.  

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