BEACON TRANSCRIPT – Over the last month, the Prime Minister of Australia had to deal with major disarray due to a High Court ruling. Judges claimed that those lawmakers with dual citizenship have no entitlement to enter parliament.
As a result, five names including Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce were crossed out from the legislative body. Malcolm Bligh Turnbull’s solution to this upheaval is a citizenship declaration at the level of the entire group of politicians.
The Constitution Bans Parliamentarians with Foreign Citizenship
Last month, the High Court found that five lawmakers were ineligible to conduct activities within the parliament. All of them were the owners of dual citizenships which was seen as a conflict of interests toward the Australian population.
Ever since the legal decision, Malcolm Bligh Turnbull faced calls for an entire scrutiny at the level of parliamentarians. The Australian leader was under pressure to protect and enact the country’s constitution. The literature specifies that those with foreign citizenships don’t belong in the parliament. This way, they avoid allegiances that may damage the country.
The High Court decision named only three members of the Liberal-National coalition. A fourth parliamentarian resigned of his own accord days after he confirmed his dual nationality. The other affected lawmakers were a part of minority parties.
Turnbull Intends to Implement an Obligatory Citizenship Declaration for Old and Future Members of the Parliament
However, Turnbull refused to organize an audit. In exchange, he thought of obliging all parliamentarians to fill in a citizenship declaration. These documents will afterward follow scrutiny. Those who presented false statements will automatically be ousted from the parliament.
On the other hand, political figures have the opportunity to renounce their second citizenship. Nonetheless, they have to attach documents that attest the waiver to their main declaration.
This new law is going to follow any further individuals who want to enter the legislative body of Australia. Starting with the day this rule comes into effect, members of the parliament will have 21 days at their disposal to sign the declaration. Prospective lawmakers will benefit the same window of time from the day they swear in.
Turnbull hopes to implement the new rule by the end of 2017. However, he is going to need support from the Labor Party which proposed a similar solution last week.
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