Parliament extends Generals Regulations Act

Parliament has approved an extension to the General Regulations Act for a further one-year period.

The General Regulations Act was passed in late 2008 as a parent legislation for over 80 regulations without a statutory basis when the new constitution was adopted.

Article 271 of the constitution states, “Regulations derive their authority from laws passed by the People’s Majlis pursuant to which they are enacted and are enforceable pursuant to such lawful authority.”

The parent act prolonged the lifespan of the regulations – which did not derive authority from an act of parliament – until new legislation such as a Criminal Procedures Act and Evidence Act could be passed.

Parliament has since been periodically extending the General Regulations Act with a further extension of one year approved today with unanimous consent.

The 42 regulations (Dhivehi) in the law includes rules governing trial procedures, criminal and civil justice procedures, defamation cases, the insurance industry, finance leasing transactions, ports, telecommunications, business registration, operation of clinics, issuance of national identity cards, medicine, importation of animals and birds, and desalination.

Regulations governing the parole programme as well as prisons were omitted from the law following the enactment of the Jails and Parole Act this year.

A bill on the legal profession is meanwhile in the government’s legislative agenda (Dhivehi), to be submitted during the second session of the People’s Majlis for 2014.