Madagascar, also known as the Malagasay Republic, is a semi-presidential representative democratic republic whereby the President is head of the state, and the Prime Minister is the head of the government. The latest Constitution was promulgated in 2010 after Andry Rajoelina seized power in 2009. Executive power is exercised by the government and legislative power is exercised both by the government and the Parliament. Parliament should have two chambers: the National Assembly and the Senate. The last election for the National Assembly was held in December 2013, and the next one is to be held in 2017.
The convening of the National Assembly on 18 February 2014 marked the official end of a Transitional Congress. The Higher Transitional Council ceased to function once the National Assembly was elected. No law has been adopted on the composition of the Senate, and no date has been set for Senate elections. Until the installation of the Senate, the National Assembly will exercise legislative power alone.
According to the 2010 Constitution, authority to initiate legislation is split between the Prime Minister, Deputies and Senators. Legislation is deliberated in the Council of Ministers and presented to the Bureau of one of the Chambers. Proposed legislation and subsequent amendments are submitted to the government. In the case of disagreement between the government and the National Assembly or the Senate, the High Constitutional Court, at the demand of the Prime Minister or the President of one of the Chambers, decides on the observations within eight days.
All proposed legislation is examined in first reading by one Chamber and then sent to the other Chamber. The discussion takes place successively until a text is adopted. When the two chambers disagree, the Prime Minister convenes a meeting of a mixed joint commission. The government may submit the text elaborated by the joint commission for approval by the two Chambers. If the commission does not reach an agreement or if this text is not adopted, the National Assembly will decide by absolute majority.