31 October 2022
The Constitution (Amendment) (No.3) Act 2022 (“Amendment Act”) came into operation on 5 October 2022 save for section 6 on the amendment of the Eighth Schedule. The Amendment Act introduces anti-party hopping provisions into the Federal Constitution with the following amendments:
- Removing Clause (6) of Article 48, which disqualifies a person from being a member of the House of Representatives for a period of five years if they resign their membership of the House of Representatives. This deletion will enable a member of the House of Representatives who resigns, to seek re-election at any time after he resigns his membership as a member of the House of Representatives;
- Introducing a new Article 49A on change of a member’s political party, where a member of the House of Representatives will cease to be a member and his seat will become vacant if (a) he resigns as, or ceases to be, a member of that political party, or (b) having been elected to the House of Representatives otherwise than as a member of a political party (i.e an independent candidate), he joins a political party as a member;
- Introducing the definition for “political party” in Clause (2) of Article 160; and
- Amending the Eighth Schedule by:
- deleting subsection (5) of section 6 on disqualification for membership of Legislative Assembly; and
- introducing a new section 7A on change of a member’s political party.