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Lower House approves draft local administration law of 2021

By JT - Aug 30,2021 - Last updated at Aug 30,2021

Speaker Abdulmunim Oddat speaks during a Lower House session on Monday (Petra photo)

AMMAN — The Lower House on Monday approved the draft local administration law for the year 2021, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported. 

According to the draft law, all provincial councils will be dissolved on the date of the law’s publication in the Official Gazette, with the formation of temporary committees until the elections are held. 

The bill, as approved by the deputies, stipulates that a first university degree is a requirement to run for the mayor's position in first-category municipalities. For the rest of the municipalities, candidates for mayorship must be literate.

The law classifies municipalities into three categories. The first catergory includes municipalities of governorate centres, and municipalities with a population of more than 200,000 people.

The second category includes municipalities of priority centres, which have a population of more than 50,000 people.

The third category includes the rest of the municipalities.

The law allows the Minister of Local Administration, with the approval of the Cabinet, to appoint two additional members in each governorate council or municipal council.

The law grants the minister the right to supervise provincial and municipal councils’ implementation of the law and allows for the minister or a relevant employee’s inspection.

The violation of the law is considered as impeding state officials from carrying out their official duties.

In the case of a violation, the councils must be committed to rectifying the situation, or else the minister has the right to stop the violating council from working for a period no more than one year.

Throughout this duration, the minister appoints a temporary committee to substitute the municipal council. 

Repealing Laws of Municipalities No. 41 of 2015 and Decentralisation No. 49 of 2015, the new draft law regulates the procedures for appealing the membership of the provincial council or the presidency or membership of the municipal council within 15 days of publishing the election results.

The appeal would be presented to the Court of First Instance, which decides on the case within 30 days.

The law also defines the tasks of the board of commissioners at the Independent Election Commission when managing provincial and municipal elections, so that voter lists are prepared through the Civil Status and Passport Department based on the voter’s place of residence.

The draft specifies candidacy requirements for the  provincial council’s presidency or membership as well as the municipal council’s membership.

Requirements include being registered on the voters’ list, having Jordanian citizenship for at least 10 years, not being affiliated with a non-Jordanian party, not being a member of the Lower and Upper Houses, in addition to not having been convicted of bankruptcy or insolvency or undergone rehabilitatation.

If employed, candidates must resign two months, 60 days, before the date of the candidacy.

The law also discusses the rights and duties of a mayor and council members, the remuneration they are entitled to, vacations, prohibitions, loss of membership and penalties.

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