National Assembly (Serbia)
|President||Nebojša Stefanović, (SNS)
Since 23 July 2012
|Vice-presidents||Konstantin Arsenović, (PUPS)
Vesna Kovač, (URS)
Žarko Korać, (LDP)
Nenad Popović, (DSS)
Gordana Čomić, (DS)
|Last election||6 May 2012|
|Dom Narodne Skupštine
13 Nikola Pašić Square
|This article is part of the series:
Politics and government of
The National Assembly (Serbian: Народна скупштина / Narodna skupština, pronounced [nǎːrodnaː skûpʃtina sř̩bijeː]) is the unicameral legislature of Serbia. The assembly is composed of 250 proportionally elected deputies by secret ballot, on 4 years term. The assembly elects a president (speaker) who presides over the sessions.1 The current president is Nebojša Stefanović since 23 July 2012.
The National Assembly exercise supreme legislative power. It adopts and amends the Constitution, elects Government, appoints and dismisses Constitutional Court judges, president of the Supreme Court of Cassation, Governor of the National Bank of Serbia and other state officials. All decisions are made by majority vote of deputies at the session at which majority of deputies are present, except for amending the Constitution, when two thirds majority is needed.2
- adopts and amends the Constitution;
- decides on changes concerning the borders of Serbia;
- calls for the national referendum;
- ratifies international contracts when the obligation of their ratification is stipulated by the Law;
- decides on war and peace and declares state of war or emergency;
- supervises the work of security services;
- enacts laws and other general acts;
- gives prior consent to the Statute of the autonomous province;
- adopts defence strategy;
- adopts development plan and spatial plan;
- adopts the budget and end-of-year balance, at the government’s proposal;
- grants amnesty for criminal offences.
- elects the Government, supervises its work and decides on expiry of term of office of the government and ministers;
- appoints and dismisses Constitutional Court judges;
- appoints the president of the Supreme Court of Cassation, court presidents, public prosecutors and judges;
- appoints and dismisses the Governor of the National Bank of Serbia and supervises his/her work;
- appoints and dismisses other officials stipulated by the Law.
Performs other functions stipulated by the Constitution and Law.
Parliamentary elections are regulated by the Constitution.1 The elections are held after the four-year term of the previous assembly has expired, but can also be held before that if the Assembly dismisses the Government or the Government resigns and no majority can be reached to elect new Government. Elections are called by the President of Serbia 90 days before the end of the term of office of the National Assembly, so that elections are finished within the following 60 days. Elections are closed party-list proportional. The whole country is one electoral district. 250 seats are than distributed between the lists using d'Hondt method. There is a minimum voting threshold of 5%, so that only the party lists which get more than 5% of the votes are awarded the seats. There is no threshold for the ethnic minority lists.
After the elections, the first session of the new Assembly is convened by the Speaker from the previous convocation, so that the session is held not later than 30 days from the day of declaring the final election results.2
By means of majority votes of all deputies, the National Assembly elects the President of the Assembly (speaker) and one or more Vice-Presidents (deputy speakers), usually one vice-president from each parliamentary group. The Speaker of the National Assembly represents the National Assembly, convokes its sessions, presides over them and performs other official activities. The vice-presidents assist the President in performing the duties within his/her purview.
In case the speaker is temporarily absent, one of the Vice-Presidents designated by him/her stands in for him/her. If the speaker does not designate any of the Vice-Presidents to stand in for him/her, the oldest Vice-President shall stand in for him/her.2
The Secretary of the National Assembly is appointed by the National Assembly. Secretary of the National Assembly assists the President and Vice-Presidents in preparing and chairing sittings. His/her term of office is terminated upon the constitution of a newly elected National Assembly, while he/she shall continue discharging his/her duties until the appointment of a new Secretary.2 Secretary is not elected from the deputies, and is not member of the Assembly.
Parliamentary groups in the National Assembly are formed not later than seven days after the date of the election of the National Assembly Speaker. A parliamentary group comprises the deputies of one political party or organisation, that has at least five deputies. A parliamentary group of at least five members may also be established by the association of deputies belonging to several political parties ore other political organisations that have less than five deputies each. A Parliamentary group is represented by the Group Head. A Group has its Deputy Head, who stands in for the head in case of his/her absence. During a National Assembly sitting, a Parliamentary group may authorise one of its members to represent the Group in relation with a particular item from the agenda. When new members join a parliamentary group, the group Head shall communicate to the National Assembly Speaker their signed statements of accession.2
The Parliamentary groups usually, but not necessary, correspond to the electoral party lists. Sometimes deputies from two or more lists join to form one group, but more usually members of one list, who joined together before the elections just to pass the threshold, split into two or more Parliamentary groups.
- List of members of the National Assembly of Serbia, 2000–2003
- List of members of the National Assembly of Serbia, 2003–2007
- List of members of the National Assembly of Serbia, 2007–2008
- List of members of the National Assembly of Serbia, 2008–2012
- List of members of the National Assembly of Serbia (current)
The first session of the new Assembly is convened by the Assembly Speaker from the previous convocation. The first sitting of the National Assembly is chaired by the oldest deputy. He/she is assisted in his/her work by the youngest deputy from each of the four party lists that polled the largest number of seats, and by the Secretary of the Assembly from the previous convocation. At the first sitting of the National Assembly the President of the Assembly, Vice-Presidents and the members of the working bodies of the National Assembly are elected and the Secretary of the National Assembly is appointed.
The National Assembly is convoked for two regular sessions per year, starting on the first workdays of March and October. The Assembly is convoked for extraordinary session at the request of at least one-third of the deputies or the request of the Government, with previously determined agenda. The National Assembly can be convoked without announcement upon the declaration of the state of war or emergency. The proposed agenda for a National Assembly sitting is prepared by the speaker. A quorum for the work of the National Assembly exists if a minimum of one-third of deputies are present at the National Assembly sitting. The quorum for the work of the National Assembly on Voting Days exists if at least 126 deputies are present at the sitting.2
The right to propose laws, other regulations and general acts belongs to every deputy, the government, assemblies of autonomous provinces or at least 30,000 voters. The Ombudsman and National Bank of Serbia also have the right to propose laws falling within their competence. Upon the request of the majority of all deputies or at least 100,000 voters, the National Assembly may call a referendum on issues falling within its competence.2
The National Assembly adopts decisions by majority vote of deputies at the session at which majority of deputies are present. The deputies vote “For” a motion, “Against” a motion, or abstain from voting.2
If the Assembly is in crisis, The President of the Republic may dissolve the National Assembly, upon an elaborated proposal of the government. The government may not propose dissolution of the Assembly, if a proposal has been submitted to dismiss the Government. The National Assembly is also dissolved if it fails to elect the Government within 90 days from the day of its constitution. The National Assembly may not be dissolved during the state of war and emergency. The National Assembly, which has been dissolved, only performs current or urgent tasks. In case of declaration of the state of war or emergency, its full competence is re-established and lasts until the end of the state of war, that is, emergency.2
Acts passed by the National Assembly are:2
- development plan;
- spatial plan;
- financial statement;
- Rules of procedure;
- conclusions; and
- authentic interpretations of the acts it passes.
The Rules of Procedure of the National Assembly of Serbia regulate the organisation and work of the National Assembly and the manner in which the deputies’ rights and duties are exercised.2
Committees are standing working bodies of the National Assembly established to consider and review issues falling within the purview of the National Assembly, to propose official documents, as well as to carry out reviews of policies pursued, and laws, by-laws and other regulations implemented by the Government, to be done by each Committee for the field that falls within its purview; and also to perform other duties foreseen by the Rules of Procedure. There are 30 standing Committees, and each Committee may, from its midst, appoint one or more sub-committees to consider certain issues from its purview.2
Before being considered by the National Assembly, a bill is considered by competent Committees and the Government, if it is not the submitter of the bill. In their opinion, the Committees and the Government may propose that the National Assembly accept or reject the bill.2
Parliamentary Groups nominate members for each Committee proportionally to the number of deputies they have at the National Assembly. The proposed candidate list for Committee members is voted on as a unit, by open voting.2
The current Parliament building is located in downtown Belgrade, on the Nikola Pašić Square №13, in front of Pioneer's Park. It is officially called Dom Narodne Skupštine (Дом Народне Скупштине, "House of the National Assembly"). The Parliament of Serbia moved into this building on 23 July 2006 following the dissolution of the State Union of Serbia and Montenegro. Prior to becoming the parliament of Serbia, it served as the seat of parliament for Yugoslavia (Kingdom, DFY, FPRY, SFRY and FRY) and the State Union. During the time of Yugoslavia and the State Union, the parliament of Serbia convened in another building on Kralja Milana street.
Construction on the building started in 1907, with the cornerstone being laid by King Peter I. The building was based on a design made by Konstantin Jovanović in 1891; a variant of that design made by Jovan Ilkić, which won a competition in 1901. World War I delayed construction, and the original plans to the building were lost. Reconstruction of the plans were made by Ilkić's son Pavle. The interior was designed by Nikolaj Krasnov. It was designed in the manner of academic traditionalism. The construction of the building was completed in 1936 and the first session in the new edifice was held on October 20 of the same year. At the time, it was the National Assembly of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia. In September 1939, the Assembly was dissolved and during the Second World War it was occupied by the aggressor's civil administration for Serbia. Several decades after the end of the war, this was the building of the Assembly of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. After the dissolution of Yugoslavia, in the 1990s, this edifice became the seat of the Assembly of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, and later the seat of the Parliament of Serbia and Montenegro. On June 5, 2006, Serbia became an independent republic, thus, the parliament building became the House of the National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia.2
The National Assembly House covers an area of 13,400 m2 and contains four floors: subterranean part, ground floor, first floor and attic and mezzanines – below the subterranean part, between the subterranean part and ground floor and between the ground floor and first floor. The building contains 100 offices, great and small plenary halls and four committee halls with full conference equipment. All the halls are air-conditioned. The building is equipped with computers, printers, scanners and fax machines, has an internal television channel and computer network with a non-stop internet connection. The library, situated on the first floor of the National Assembly, has an area of 165 m2 and contains over 60,000 books.2
A sculpture by Toma Rosandić, Igrali se konji vrani ("Play of Black Horses"), was placed in front of the building in 1939.
A clip of the parliament building burning (which happened during the October fifth demonstrations) can be seen in the movie The Day the Earth Stood Still (2008). The building is shown on the five thousand Serbian dinar banknote. The parliament building was also featured in the movie Coriolanus (2011).3
Group visits to the National Assembly are organised every day, between 9.00 a.m. and 4 p.m.2
Before 2006, the National Assembly of Serbia convened in the building on Kralja Milana Street №14, while the current building was used for the federal parliament. This building is still used by the National Assembly, but not for sessions. It's offices are used for the National Assembly administration.
The original design for this building was completed in 1948, and its construction was completed in late 1953. The building was designed by architect E. Azriel, and was constructed by the Construction Institute of Serbia. The Building was originally named the "Office Building of the Presidency of the Government of the People's Republic of Serbia at Marshal Tito Street №14" (later renamed to Kralja Milana street). The first National Assembly session in the building was held on March 20, 1954, while in the period between 1945 and 1954, the National Assembly sessions were held in the current building known as the House of the National Assembly, Nikola Pašić Square №13.2
The current National Assembly was elected in the 2012 parliamentary elections.
- Gordana Čomić (Democratic Party)
- Konstantin Arsenović (Party of United Pensioners of Serbia)
- Nenad Popović (Democratic Party of Serbia)
- Vesna Kovač (United Regions of Serbia)
- Žarko Korać (Liberal Democratic Party)
- Wikisource: Constitution of Serbia
- National Assembly of Serbia: Informer (This text is in public domain as the official material of the Republic of Serbia state body or a body performing public functions, under the terms of Article 6, Paragraph 2 of Serbian copyright law)
- Ralph Fiennes filming "Coriolanus" in Serbia
- National Assembly official site: Parliamentary groups
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: National Assembly of Serbia|
- National Assembly of Serbia. Official website. (English)
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