National Assembly Question Time-Plans to set up law reform commission under study


10-October-2012

This was in answer to a question tabled by elected member for Baie Lazare Wilby Lucas and asked in his absence by elected member for Cascade Charles De Commarmond.

Mr Lucas wanted to know if the government has any plans to put in place a Law Reform Commission now that many of our laws are not meeting the demands of our society.

Answering the question on behalf of President James Michel, who is responsible for Legal Affairs, Vice-President Faure explained that the issue is being closely analysed by the attorney general’s office.

Mr Faure pointed out that at present the laws are examined by the different ministries before these are submitted for consideration by the cabinet which then gives instructions to the attorney general’s office to draft them.

He noted that the commission being proposed will carry out more comprehensive work than what the ministries are doing.

Vice-President Faure added that in September 2008 the government appointed judge Ranjan Pereira as law reform commissioner and he has started working on reviewing our laws.

He further stressed that the government, just like the Assembly, recognises that the country needs new laws, not only to replace the ones which have served their time but also new laws to meet the country’s increasing development demands and requirements. 

In line with that he noted that over the past few years several new laws have been approved by the National Assembly.

Asked if a timeframe has been set to review the laws or if the government has put in place a mechanism to speed up the review, Vice-President Faure said at present the attorney general’s office is faced with a shortage of manpower to help clear the backlog of several draft laws already pending.

Mr Faure said the government is doing its best to urgently recruit more personnel to work in that office.

With regard to the law reform commission itself, Mr Faure noted that once the analytical exercise will be completed, the government will be in a better position to make a decision based on strong and reliable facts for its establishment.

Meanwhile, in answer to another question submitted by Mr Lucas who wanted to know when the attorney general’s office will put at the disposal of the public a revised version of all laws left unpublished since 2005, Mr Faure pointed out that since his appointment in 2008 under the Statute Law Revision judge Pereira has been reviewing laws from 1995 until 2012. He noted that so far a large part of the revisions has been completed and according to the attorney general’s office all the work will be finished and published before August 2013 with provisions for online publications.

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