Basic Law of the Macao Special Administrative Region/Chapter IV/Section 3

Section 3Edit

The Legislature

Article 67 The Legislative Council of the Macao Special Administrative Region shall be the legislature of the Region.

Article 68 The Legislative Council of the Macao Special Administrative Region shall be composed of permanent residents of the Region. The majority of its members shall be elected. The method for forming the Legislative Council is prescribed in Annex II: Method for the Formation of the Legislative Council of the Macao Special Administrative Region. Members of the Legislative Council, upon assuming office, shall declare their financial situation in accordance with legal procedures.

Article 69 The term of office of the Legislative Council of the Macao Special Administrative Region shall be four years, except for the first term which shall be stipulated otherwise.

Article 70 If the Legislative Council of the Macao Special Administrative Region is dissolved by the Chief Executive in accordance with the provisions of this Law, it must, within 90 days, be reconstituted in accordance with Article 68 of this Law.

Article 71 The Legislative Council of the Macao Special Administrative Region shall exercise the following powers and functions:

(1) To enact, amend, suspend or repeal laws in accordance with the provisions of this Law and legal procedures;

(2) To examine and approve budgets introduced by the government; and examine the report on audit introduced by the government;

(3) To decide on taxation according to government motions and approve debts to be undertaken by the government;

(4) To receive and debate the policy addresses of the Chief Executive;

(5) To debate any issue concerning public interests;

(6) To receive and handle complaints from Macao residents;

(7) If a motion initiated jointly by one-third of all the members of the Legislative Council charges the Chief Executive with serious breach of law or dereliction of duty and if he or she refuses to resign, the Council may, by a resolution give a mandate to the President of the Court of Final Appeal to form an independent investigation committee to carry out investigation. If the committee considers the evidence sufficient to substantiate such charges, the Council may pass a motion of impeachment by a two-thirds majority of all its members and report it to the Central People's Government for decision; and

(8) To summon, as required when exercising the above mentioned powers and functions, persons concerned to testify or give evidence.

Article 72 The Legislative Council of the Macao Special Administrative Region shall have a President and a Vice President who shall be elected by and from among the members of the Legislative Council. The President and Vice President of the Legislative Council shall be Chinese citizens who are permanent residents of the Region and have ordinarily resided in Macao for a continuous period of not less than 15 years.

Article 73 In case of absence of the President of the Legislative Council of the Macao Special Administrative Region, the Vice President shall act as President. In the event that the office of President or of Vice President of the Legislative Council becomes vacant, new President or Vice President shall be elected.

Article 74 The President of the Legislative Council of the Macao Special Administrative Region shall exercise the following powers and functions:

(1) To preside over meetings;

(2) To decide on the agenda, giving priority to government bills for inclusion in the agenda upon the request of the Chief Executive;

(3) To decide on the dates of meetings;

(4) To call special sessions during the recess;

(5) To call emergency sessions on his or her own or upon the request of the Chief Executive; and

(6) To exercise other powers and functions as prescribed in the rules of procedure of the Legislative Council.

Article 75 Members of the Legislative Council of the Macao Special Administrative Region may introduce bills in accordance with the provisions of this Law and legal procedures. Bills which do not relate to public expenditure or political structure or the operation of the government may be introduced individually or jointly by members of the Council. The written consent of the Chief Executive shall be required before bills relating to government policies are introduced.

Article 76 Members of the Legislative Council of the Macao Special Administrative Region shall have the right to raise questions about the government work in accordance with legal procedures.

Article 77 The quorum for the meeting of the Legislative Council of the Macao Special Administrative Region shall be not less than one half of all its members. Except otherwise prescribed by this Law, bills and motions shall be passed by more than half of all the members of the Council. The rules of procedure of the Legislative Council shall be made by the Council, on its own, provided that they do not contravene this Law.

Article 78 A bill passed by the Legislative Council of the Macao Special Administrative Region may take effect only after it is signed and promulgated by the Chief Executive.

Article 79 Members of the Legislative Council of the Macao Special Administrative Region shall be immune from legal action in respect of their statements and voting at meetings of the Council.

Article 80 Members of the Legislative Council of the Macao Special Administrative Region, excluding active criminals, shall not be subjected to arrest without the permission of the Council.

Article 81 The President of the Legislative Council of the Macao Special Administrative Region shall declare, according to the decision of the Council, that a member of the Council is no longer qualified for the office under any of the following circumstances:

(1) When he or she loses the ability to discharge his or her duties as a result of serious illness or other reasons;

(2) When he or she assumes posts which he or she is not permitted by law to hold concurrently;

(3) When he or she, with no valid reason, is absent from meetings for five consecutive times or for 15 times intermittently without the consent of the President of the Legislative Council;

(4) When he or she breaches his or her oath; and

(5) When he or she is convicted and sentenced to imprisonment for more than 30 days for a criminal offence committed within or outside the Region.