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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - NA winds up current session

NA winds up current session

G ENERAL Secretary of the National Assembly Lieutenant General Tol Las announced

the National Assembly will debate and vote on a bill on the organization and

functioning of the Council of Ministers next week.

Las said the final

meetings in this session of the Assembly will be held from July 4-6. He also

described the agenda for the final meetings of this session to the Post, and

announced that National Assembly committee hearings on the Royal Government's

Draft Immigration Law will be completed on July 6.

Las said: "The second

session of the National Assembly will end on July 7, but three extraordinary

sessions are planned for the three month recess period which

follows."

The National Assembly meets in three month sessions followed by

three month recesses. The current session is Cambodia's second since the

acceptance of the Constitution on Sep 21 last year.

The last meeting of

the Assembly was held in late May, and the Urbanization Law was passed. This is

the only law the Assembly has passed in its current session which began on May

7.

The agenda for the three day session at the beginning of July includes

two standing items and two new items. The latter will require the approval of

the members before they can be considered.

Las said: "A move to declare

the Khmer Rouge outlaws is not on the agenda, but, in my opinion, there is a

strong move in that direction. It is possible that a motion to do so will come

from a member of the Assembly itself."

Old agenda items include a

government request for the approval of General Sin Sen and General Kieng Vang to

be elevated to Secretaries of State in the Ministry of Interior from their

current positions as Under Secretaries of State in the Ministry.

A

proclamation of those Assembly members who will replace members who have taken

up governorships and ambassadorships, and the seating of Prince Chakrapong and

Sin Song has not yet been accomplished. This agenda item remains unsettled since

this session's first meeting on April 7. A Stalemate on seating forced that

meeting to halt after only two hours.

New agenda items include

consideration of the Organization Law for the Council of Ministers and a request

to create a special committee to review and revise the existing internal rules

of the National Assembly.

Las said: "Our rules and regulations don't

spell out everything that is necessary to create a framework for our legislative

work. It doesn't spell out roles and responsibilities. The legislative procedure

is not very clear. We need to revise the internal rules."

Las said there

is no word on the draft press law or the investment law, both of which will have

to be assigned to the appropriate National Assembly commission before they are

considered by the full Assembly.

The immigration law arrived at the

National Assembly on June 15 and was assigned to the Commission of Interior and

Defense on June 17. The commission has held several hearings, inviting human

rights NGOs and UNHCR officials to speak. The Minister of Interior will attend

the last scheduled meeting of the commission on July 6.

Las said: "It is

possible that the immigration bill will be ready for consideration at that

point, without being returned to the Council of Ministers. It could then be

considered in the first extraordinary session of the National Assembly planned

for the third week in July.

Las said: "In addition to the July 18-22

session there are sessions planned for the third week of August and the third

week of September. Work in the commissions will continue, they will not recess

at all."

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