Unlearned lessons of the Constitution

am en ru

In my opinion, the creation of the Constitution is one of the most important achievements of mankind and can be compared with the invention of a wheel or a monetary unit. Although constitution in its modern form was adopted relatively recently - on December 7, 1787 by the American state of Delaware, the development of this idea belongs to the whole of humanity, and it goes back centuries.

But, first of all, I will cite a number of formulations that characterize modern constitutions that differ little from each other in states that stand at about the same civilizational level. In particular, at the heart of the Constitution of the Republic of Armenia lies the European, or more precisely, the French model.

1. The Constitution is considered the supreme law of any state. It is not discussed, it is mandatory and it can be changed only in the case of a general referendum.

2. The Constitution is a fundamental act of the state and its institutional structures, primarily three independent branches of government: legislative, executive and judicial.

3. Being the main political and legal document of the state, it predetermines and expresses the foundations of the existing socio-political order, regulates social relations within the state. The Constitution is also an impeccable legal document, the provisions of which should not contradict each other.

Now, let's move from theory to practice. Naturally, only the Constitutional Court is entitled to give competent assessments of the observance of constitutional order in the country, but there are obvious facets that cannot be overlooked.

First of all, on the part of the first point I mentioned above, of course, the referendum provision is very important. However, are the periodic changes of the Constitution, which have become traditional during the years of independence, really demand of the public? Let me remind you that the Basic Law was adopted at a referendum on July 5, 1995, on May 25, 2003 an unsuccessful attempt was made to change it, but on November 27, 2005 another similar attempt was crowned with success and, finally, a referendum held on December 6, 2016 showed that our public wants to change the semi-presidential model of government to parliamentary.

In particular, the last constitutional amendment was implemented taking into account the political situation. Everything that happened almost immediately after that was the result of the above-mentioned changes, which were rewarded by a cool, if not worse, attitude from the people. Unfortunately, this obvious fact was not realized by the majority of representatives of the previous authorities, and, apparently, this did not become a lesson for the new authorities. In particular, the current state of enforcement of the provision on the independence of the three branches of government is the evience of this idea. I don’t want to go back to the last known events, it’s been written and said a lot, I’ll just note that if there were serious problems in the past, today there’s an obvious attempt to make all three classical branches of power centralized, which is detrimental to our country.

Finally, on the regulation of social relations within the state: today, in my opinion, there is a reverse process, when each political force interprets the main provisions of the Constitution in its own way, and some argue that the opinion of the people in Armenia is above the Constitution. Of course, in the end, one day we can hold another constitutional referendum on the elimination of the Constitution itself.

After all, they live without such an act, for example, in Great Britain, where precedents and constitutional customs are in effect. Or in Israel, where, if I am not mistaken, 11 fundamental laws regulate social and political life. Or maybe follow the example of the Vatican, where the highest jurisdiction belongs to the Pope, and he can change any law at his discretion at any time? All the same, all the inhabitants of the Vatican somehow serve the papal power...

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