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Municipal Elections: Supreme Court Rejects Valayden’s Constitutional Challenge



Municipal Elections: Supreme Court Rejects Valayden's Constitutional Challenge

In a 34-page judgment, the Supreme Court of Mauritius has dismissed a constitutional challenge brought by Rajen Valayden, a contestant in the recent municipal elections, against the extension of the elections for two years.

The court found that Valayden failed to establish any constitutional violation or infringement on the separation of powers that could question the constitutional validity of the legislation.

Valayden’s motion was filed against the State and Prime Minister Pravind Jugnauth, arguing that the extension of the municipal elections was unconstitutional.

The judges, led by Chief Justice Rehana Mungly-Gulbul and Justice David Chan, ruled that the National Assembly is authorized to promulgate Article 12A (1A) of the Local Government Act, which amends existing law to extend the lifespan of municipalities.

The judges found that Article 12(A) of the Local Government Act does not contravene Articles 1 and 45 of the Constitution or any other constitutional provision. They did not accept the arguments raised by Valayden.

In his constitutional petition, Valayden claimed that “the impugned section” interferes with the holding of municipal elections, which is a “fundamental tenet” of democratic government.

He argued that the two-year extension is unreasonable, especially since municipal councilors will have a ten-year mandate when they were elected for a limited six-year term. According to Valayden, this extension violates Article 1 of the Constitution.

Source: l’Express

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