Presidential Election Law amended
- By Misheel Lkhasuren -
- May 03,2021
Last week, Parliament amended the Law on the Presidential Election, which was adopted in December 2020, with an approval of 53.6 percent.
In accordance with the amendment, Article 3.1.2 of the law, which states, “A presidential candidate is a person who is a citizen of Mongolia, who reached the age of 50, had a permanent residence in the country for at least the five years prior to the election, and registered their candidacy for president of Mongolia and received a candidacy card,” was changed to, “A presidential candidate is a citizen of Mongolia, who fulfilled the requirements in Article 30.2 of the Constitution of Mongolia, and registered their candidacy for president of Mongolia and received a candidacy card.”
Moreover, Article 5.4 stipulating, “A citizen of Mongolia who reached the age of 50, had a permanent residence in the country for at least the five years prior to the election, and fulfills all other requirements set in the Constitution of Mongolia, is eligible to be elected as the president of Mongolia,” was amended to read, “An natural citizen of Mongolia, who fulfilled the requirements set in Article 3.1.2 of this law, and who has never been elected and served as president before can be elected as the president of Mongolia for a single term.”
On April 22, Parliament adopted a parliamentary resolution to accept the Constitutional Court’s conclusion, which made the current and former presidents of ineligible to run for the presidency again, necessitating changes to the Presidential Election Law.
However, Article 81.1 of the Presidential Election Law prohibits approving or amending the law within a year before the polling day of the regular presidential election. During the session, some lawmakers explained that there is no other choice but to make changes due to the Constitutional Court conclusion.
On April 29, President Kh.Battulga vetoed the parliamentary resolution to accept the Constitutional Court’s conclusion. In line with corresponding legislations, Parliament rejected the veto imposed by the president with a 74.6 percent majority vote. Legislators present at the veto discussion pointed out that this is the first time a veto is placed on a parliamentary resolution to accept a Constitutional Court conclusion, and the president’s veto cannot be accepted because the veto on the given parliamentary resolution is equivalent to overturning the Constitutional Court conclusion.
WATER RESOURCES AND USE DISCUSSED
During the parliamentary plenary session on April 30, Minister of Environment and Tourism N.Urtnasan briefed on the current status of water resources and use, and the measures to be taken in the future.
Emphasizing that the implementation of the law on spending at least 35 percent of water resources fees for water protection and rehabilitation is insufficient, the minister said, “In 2020, 45.1 billion MNT was collected from water use fees and at least 15.8 billion MNT must be spent on protection and rehabilitation of water resources, but 9.2 billion MNT was spent.”
“The average annual water reserve in Mongolia was 608.4 cubic kilometers, but in recent years, it has decreased to 564.8 cubic kilometers due to global warming and climate change. As of 2020, 180 lakes, 116 rivers and 381 springs have dried up. The country’s water consumption is over 500 million cubic meters per year. However, in the last year, it has increased from 570 million to 590 million cubic meters. In this way, water consumption is expected to increase by two to three times by 2030,” she added.
According to the environment minister, there is need to take measures to completely resolve funding issues related to the implementation of the government action plan and long and medium-term policies, to resolve the necessary funds to reserve surface water, increase water resources and build a water complex, to take the Gobi steppe groundwater under special state protection, to supplement Ulaanbaatar’s water supply with a combined source of surface and underground water reserves, and to implement the construction and expansion of wastewater treatment facilities to improve water supply and increase water resources.
N.Urtnasan noted that groundwater should not be used in mining and heavy industry from 2030 and on, and during this period, the construction of surface water supply projects should be started and put into operation.
In connection with the information, lawmaker Sh.Adishaa said that water management should be one of the fundamental parts of state policy, and due to the large amount of water used by mining, the environment is polluted and the ecological balance is lost.
Parliamentarian S.Odontuya stressed that significant progress has been made in creating a legal environment and streamlining water use through price and tariff policies, and asked about the state funding for research.
The minister responded that about 400 million MNT is budgeted annually for water research.