Mali – Soon to be president-parliamentary?

There has been an ongoing process of constitutional revision in Mali. In December 2008 (see previous post), the so-called Diawara report recommended a number of constitutional changes. Following a further period of reflection, it appears as if changes might be about to follow.

According to the Mali daily, L’Essor, Daba Diawara has now produced more detailed recommendations. In a speech marking the presentation of the proposals President Amadou Toumani Touré announced that he expected the government to submit a constitutional reform bill before parliament very soon. Assuming the bill was approved (and the president definitely made that assumption), President Touré said that a referendum would be held in autumn.

I do not have a copy of the new proposals or the bill, but the salient aspect for this blog is the report that the bill will modify the country’s semi-presidential system. Specifically, the newspaper report states: “Le président de la République aura également la possibilité de mettre fin aux fonctions du Premier ministre sans que celui-ci ne démissionne” [the president will be able to dismiss the PM unilaterally].

In other words, the reform, if the report is to be believed, will change Mali from a premier-presidential to a president-parliamentary form of semi-presidentialism.

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