You don’t write Parlament for Parliament. I just used that term to indicate the lawmaker’s lack of attention to spelling in legislative texts.
The House of People’s Representatives should have its own language editor. The English version of the legislative text is full of spelling errors. Recently I was working on statutory definitions of Ethiopian legal terms. What I realized is that the extent of the problem requires some attention by the law maker or the drafters.
Here are some examples of serious spelling errors in the English version of the legislative text.
P and R stand for Proclamation and Regulation respectively
The numbers represent the number of the proclamation and regulation and year of enactment.
e.g. R173/2009 represents Regulation number 173 of 2009
P372/03 stands for proclamation number 372 of 2003
The word with a spelling error is indicated in red followed by the correct word in bold
Pension [Pensione] (R173/2009) means an establishment offering lodging and breakfast services to tourist and other clients
(According to the Oxford Dictionary 8th ed. Pensione is small hotel or boarding house in Italy)
Documentary Film (R66/99) means a film recorded with the objective of broadcasting or disseminating natural, historical, cultural, political, economical, [economic] social conditions and other factual materials through television, cinema or other electronic screen transmissions
(According to the Oxford Dictionary 8th ed. Economical means giving good value or return in relation to the resources or money expended. Economic is defined as “of or relating to economics or the economy” Similarly, Political means “of or relating to the government or public affairs of a country” and Social is defined as “of or relating to society or its organization” Therefore economic not economical should be taken as the right word for the definition)
Rights to Lien (P372/03) it is a preferential rights of the warehouse man over the goods stored in a warehouse or over the pleadgee [pledgee] of warehouse recipts [receipts] or over the bailer or his transferee on the proceeds earned from sale of the goods, in relation to the cost incurred persuant [pursuant] to the provision of this proclamation to store, prepare pack, transport, insure and for Labour and professional work and incurred
Academic Staff (R132/2007) means any employee of the University College engage [engaged] in teaching or research activities
Accident (P273/03) shall mean an occurrence associated with the operation of an aircraft which takes place between the time any person boards the aircraft with the intention of flight until such time as all such persons have disembarked, in which:
(a) a person is fatally or seriously injured as a result of:
1) being in the aircraft, or
2) direct contact with any part of the aircraft, including parts which have come detached from the aircraft, or
3) direct exposure to jet blast, except when the injuries are from natural causes, self-inflicted or inflicted by other persons, or when the injuries are to stowaways hiding outside the areas normally available to the passengers and crew; or
(b) the aircraft sustains damage or structural failure which:
1) adversely affects the structural strength performance or flight characterstics [characteristics] of the aircraft, and
2) would normally require major repair or replacement of the affected component, except for engine failure or damage when the damage is limited to the engine, its cowlings or accessories; or for damage limited to propellers, wing tips, antennas, tires, brakes, fairing, small dents or puncture holes in the aircraft skin; or
(c) the aircraft is missing or is completely inaccessible
Animal (P267/02) means for the purpose of this proclamation domestic and wild animals includs [includes] sea animals and bees
Aviation personel [personnel] (P273/03) shall mean any individual who engages as pilot in command, co-pilot or flight engineer or any other member of the flight crew of an aircaft [aircraft] or who is involved in the inspection, maintenance, overhaul or repair of aircraft, aircraft engines, propellers or components or who serves in the capacity of air-traffic controller or aircraft dispatcher
Beekeeper (P660/09) means a person who is engaged in keeping of honeyhee [honeybee] colonies in hives
Commercial representative(P67/97) means any person who is not domeciled [domiciled] at the place where the head office of the business enterprise or business person he represents is situate, bound to such enterprise or business person by a contract of employment, and entrusted with the carrying out of only trade promotional activities on behalf and in the name of the business enterprise or the business person he represents without being a trader himself
Committee (R135/2007) means a property valuation committee established persuant [pursuant] to the Proclamation
Conciliation(P377/06) means the activity conduced [conducted] by a private person or person appointed by the Ministry at the joint request of the parties for the purpose of bringing the parties together and seeking to arrange between them voluntary settlement of a labour dispute which their own efforts alone do not produce to utilize a given State forest for a defined period of time
Conditions of work (P361/03) means the entire relations between the City Goverment [Government] and its officials and employees and shall include hours of work, salary, leaves, payments due to dissmissal, [dismissal] if any, health and safety, compensation to victims of employment injury, grievance procedure and other similar matters
Contraband (P60/97) shall mean the act or an attempt of or providing assistance of importing goods beyond the first or exporting beyond the last customs station in contravention of laws and regulations or possessing, selling or transfering [transferring] of such goods in a commercial level and it includes cooperation in such activities
Council of Inquiry (P250/01,) shall mean the Council of Constitutional Inquiry of the Federal Goverment [Government]
Customs Station (P60/97) shall mean any place designated as customs office at the port of entry or exit of goods, transit routs or at customs area for the controll [control] of import and export goods, collection of duties and taxes
Employer(R91/2003) means any government, private or non-governmental institution or international or regional orgnaization [organization] or person employing graduates of higher education institutions including self-employed graduate of the same
Fish (P315/03) means any fish species, crustanceans, [crustaceans] mollusks, including their eggs, spawn fries or fingerlings
International Animal Health Certificate (P267/02) means a certificate issued by the vererinary [veterinary] administration of the exporting country certifying the state of good health of animals, semen, embryo/ova, and hatching-eggs destined for export
Psychotropic Substance (P176/99) means any substance subject to control according to psychotropic Substances Convention of the United Nations ratified by Ethiopia. This shall also included [include] a substance that is categorized as psychotropic substance by the Authority
Public Private Partnership (P649/09) mean [means] investment through private sector participation by a contractual arrangement between a public body and a private sector enterprise, as the concessionnaire, [concessionaire] in which the concessionnaire [concessionaire]:
a) undertakes to perform or undertake any construction project or service or lease concession;
b) assumes substantial financial, technical and operational risks in connection with the performance of a public function or use of government property; and
c) receives consideration for performing a public function or utilizing government property, by way of fees from any public funds, user levies collected by the concessionnaire [concessionaire] from users or customers for a service provided by it, or a combination of such consideration
Restricted Seed (R16/97) means seed prohibited from being imported into Ethiopia or exported from Ethiopia or seed put under resetriction [restriction]
Road (P80/97) means highway or any other road classified and disignated [designated] as part of the national road network and includes bridge on those roads
Serious Ethical Violations (P433/05) means any ethical violation entailing dismissal as per appropriate code of conduet [conduct] regulation
The Sport Facilities Administration Proclamation may not be as controversial as the new Urban Land Lease Proclamation; however, an unexpected incident during its adoption has made it somewhat ‘Historical’ document. An interesting description regarding the incident is found on capital, one of the country’s top business newspapers.
In a rare show of dissident in the House of Peoples’ Representatives whose 546 of 547 seats are filled by the ruling EPRDF and its affiliates, two ruling party Members of Parliament on Thursday abstained while the majority approved a new proclamation for the administration of sport facilities allowing alcohol ads to be placed in stadiums, while at the same time levying punishment on crimes yet to be spelled out.
(Two ruling party MPs abstain as majority approves controversial sport facilities’ bill Monday, 09 January 2012)
The two representatives were unhappy about the criminal sanctions imposed by the proclamation in article 11(3) (b) &(c). Article 11 (3) (b) of the proclamation makes advertisement in sport facilities about cigarettes or cigarette related substances or liquors with more than 12% alcoholic content a criminal act punishable with imprisonment from six month to one year and with fine from Birr 5,000 to Birr 10,000. This law comes as a good news for the beer industry as they could advertise their products in every sport facility. (The alcoholic content of beer on average is not more than 12%)
The 12% ceiling was unacceptable for the two MPs. It seems they just wanted the prohibition of any advertisement about alcoholic beverages in sport facilities. As reported by Capital, one of the MPs raised a challenging question regarding the unwanted side effects of the law. He asked “Aren’t we sending the message that the alcohol we know to be harmful to the public is ‘ok’ only because their alcoholic content is below 12 percent?”
The other point of dissent was the way the act constituting a crime in article 11 (3)(c) is stated. According to this article, any person who commits in sport facilities, other acts prohibited by regulation issued for the implementation of this Proclamation; is punishable with imprisonment from six month to one year and with fine from Birr 5,000 to Birr 10,000.
Honestly speaking, it is logically and practically impossible to obey this provision. It lays down a punishment, but you can not for sure know the criminalized act.
This is not the first time parliament has failed to be guided by the basic principles of criminal law in its criminal legislation on specific laws. I have tried to briefly address this issue on my previous post ‘You could be a criminal without committing a crime.’ According to Article 20(6) of Forest Development, Conservation and Utilization Proclamation No.542/2007 anyone will be punished with not less than 6 months and not exceeding 5 years imprisonment and with fine Birr 30,000 if he commits A CRIMINAL ACT NOT SPECIEFIED IN THE PROCLAMATION.
The following is the text of Sport Facilities Administration Proclamation No. 729/2012. You can also download the pdf version of the document Continue reading →
2011 was the busiest year for the Council of Ministers. During this year more regulations have been issued by the Council than proclamations issued by the House of People’s Representatives. One of the factors contributing for the growth of legislation by the Council is the delegation of vast powers of law making power provided in article 34 of Definition of Powers and Duties of the Executive Organs of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia Proclamation No. 691/2010. According to this provision, The Council of Ministers is empowered, where it finds it necessary, to reorganize the federal government executive organs by issuing regulations for the closure, merger or division of an existing executive organ or for change of its accountability or mandates or for the establishment of a new one. The power of establishing new agencies through regulation has significantly increased the legislative role of the Council of Ministers.
Most of the regulations issued in 2011 are regulations for the establishment of Agencies, public enterprises and universities. These regulations mainly give legal personality for the newly established universities. There are also regulations for the re-establishment of the existing universities. The contents of each of the regulations are almost similar and contain four or five articles. Here is a brief summary of the content of university establishment or re-establishment regulations.
- All Universities are accountable to the Ministry of Education
- They are governed by Higher Education Proclamation No. 650/2009 and Federal Universities Council of Ministers Regulation No.211/2011
The respective regulations establishing or re-establishing a university is listed below:
Reg no.221/2011 Wollo University
Reg no.222/2011 Wachamo University
Reg no.223/2011 Adigrat University
Reg no.224/2011 Mizan Tepi University
Reg no.225/2011 Axum University
Reg no.226/2011 Jigjiga University
Reg no.227/2011 Debre Markos University
Reg no.228/2011 Debre Birhan University
Reg no.229/2011 Debre Tabor University
Reg no.230/2011 Dire Dawa University
Reg no.231/2011 Hawassa University
Reg no.232/2011 Haramaya University (Re-establishment)
Reg no.233/2011 Bahir Dar University (Re-establishment)
Reg no.237/2011 Adama Science and Technology University
Reg no.238/2011 Dilla University (Re-establishment)
Reg no.239/2011 Metu University
Reg no.240/2011 Jimma University (Re-establishment)
Reg no.241/2011 Gondar University
DOWNLOAD the pdf version of Corrigenda to proclamations and Regulations.
“A corrigendum of a legislative text is conventionally thought of as a mere rectification of obvious typing mistakes. It is done after the publication of a legislative text. Its purpose is to realign the published legislative text with the original will of the legislative body by removing mistakes that occurred in the publication process. A corrigendum does not contain any provisions on validity or entry into force. It derives its authority from the text it rectifies, including its legitimacy, legal force and the provisions on its temporal application.” Corrigenda in the Official Journal of the European Union: Community Law as Quicksand (Michal Bobek)
The term corrigendum (plural corrigenda) generally refers to an error that is to be corrected in a printed work after publication. It may also be used to denote list of errors in a printed work as a separate page of corrections, known as an errata page. Merriam Webster(online dictionary) defines corrigendum as “ an error in a printed work discovered after printing and shown with its correction on a separate sheet” \
In the following list you will find corrrigenda to proclamations and regulations. According to article 11(b) of House of Peoples’ Representatives working procedure and members’ code of conduct (amendment) proclamation no. 470/2005 the power to ‘undertake the technical correction, where deemed necessary’ is an exclusive power of the speaker of the house. There is no monitoring procedure to ensure that any ‘correction’ introduced by the speaker does not alter or change the substantive content of the proclamation. What is worse, those errors to be rectified by the speaker are not the ones which are detected after publication. Article 11(b) of proclamation no. 470/2005 empowers the speaker to make correction prior to the publication of the proclamation in the Negarit Gazetta. This in effect means that the speaker of the house holds a law making power in the name of correcting errors. Any error before publication is an exclusive matter to be dealt to the house itself. Even though the basic purpose of corrigenda is to ensure that the published text is similar with the draft approved by the house, Ethiopian law making procedure deviates from the basic rules and principles of legislation acceptable in all legal systems.
The Council of Ministers does not have any legislative procedure which is official to the public and approved by law. Hence, no knows who actually makes correction to regulations.
Corrigenda to proclamations
1. Corrigendum No. 1/1998 English version
[Repealed by Property Mortgaged or Pledged with Banks (Amendment) Proclamation No. 216/2000]
[Business Mortgage Proclamation No. 98/1998]
Property Mortgaged or Pledged with Banks Proclamation No. 97/1998 is hereby corrected by:
1. omission of the “,” after the word “buyer”, in Article 3, and insertion thereinafter of the phrase “or to take over the property, in consideration of its estimated value as specified in the contract of loan, and have the ownership thereof registered in its own name; in cases where bidders fail to appear upon a secon4 public auction having been held.”; and
2. omission of the “.” at the end, of Article 4, and addition thereinafter of the phrase “or take over the property, in consideration of its estimated value as specified in the contract of 19an,and have the ownership thereof registered in its own name; in cases where bidders fail to appear upon a second public auction having been held.”
2. Corrigendum No. 2/1999 Amharic and English version
[Ethiopian National Archives and Library Proclamation No. 179/1999]
The “2%” in “Article 8(2)” under Article 2(2) of the Investment (Amendment) Proclamation No. 168/1999 shall read “27%”.
3. Corrigendum No. 4/2009 Amharic and English version
[Federal Government of Ethiopia Financial Administration Proclamation No. 648/2009]
The statement under Article 60 of the Ethiopian Building Proclamation No. 624/2009 stated as “This Proclamation shall come into force upon the date of its publication in the Federal Negarit Gazeta” shall be read as “This Proclamation shall come into force after one year from the date of its publication in the Federal Negrit Gazeta.”
4. Corrigendum No. 4/2009 Amharic and English version
[Ethiopian Building Proclamation No. 624/2009]
In this Proclamation the statement under Article 60 stated as “ This Proclamation shall come into force upon the date of its publication in the Federal Negarit Gazeta” shall be read as “This Proclamation shall come into force after one year from the date of its publication in the Federal Negrit Gazeta.”
5. Corrigendum No. 5/2009 English version
[Transaction of Precious Minerals Proclamation No.651/2009]
The English version of Article 23 (1) of the Banking Business Proclamation No. 592/2008 which reads in its second line as “…. The international financial statements standards ….” Is hereby corrected and shall be read as “…international financial reporting standards..”
6. Corrigendum No. 6/2009 English version
[Transaction of Precious Minerals Proclamation No.651/2009]
The English version of the Micro-Financing Business Proclamation No.626/2009 writes the number Article “25” two times, accordingly the latter Article “25” is hereby corrected as Article “26”. Similarly the English version of this same Article 26 in the last paragraph of its sub article (1) which reads as “Birr 500,000” is hereby corrected and shall be read as “Birr 50,000
7. Corrigendum no. 1/2001 Amharic and English version (Amharic corrigenda is from the English corrigenda)
[Ethiopian National Security Council Establishment Proclamation No. 257/2001]
The Fuel price stabilization Fund Establishment Proclamation No. 247/2001 is hereby corrected as
follows: The word “from” after “working days” in Sub- Article (2) of Article 5 is deleted, and the phrase’ ‘of the month next to” is inserted therein.
8. Corrigendum No. 1/2002 Amharic and English version (Amharic corrigenda is from the English corrigenda)
[National Agricultural Input Authority Establishment Proclamation No. 288/2002]
The “Five (5) years” after the word “next” in sub-Article (1) of Article 28 of the Income Tax Proclamation No. 286/2002 shall read “three (3) years.”
9. Corrigendum No. 7/2010 Amharic and English version
[Income Tax (Amendment) Proclamation No.693 /2010]
Article 38 of the Definition of Powers and Duties of the Executive Organs of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia which reads “This Proclamation shall come into force a year after its publication in the Federal Negarit Gazeta.” is hereby corrected and shall be read as “This Proclamation shall come into force on the date of publication in the Federal Negarit Gazeta.”
Corrigendum to Regulations
Corrigendum No. 1/1999 Amharic and English version
[Electricity operations Council of Ministers Regulations No. 49/1999]
The Customs Tariffs Council of Ministers (Amendment) Regulations of 25 December, 1998 is hereby corrected as follows:
a) the issue number “5thyear No. 27″ shall read “5th year No. 51″; and
b) the page numbers “942″ and “943″ shall read “1025″ and “1026″ respectively.
Repeal of Corrigendum No. 1/998
Property Mortgaged or Pledged with Banks (Amendment) Proclamation No. 216/2000
The Property Mortgaged or Pledged with banks Proclamation No. 97/1998 is hereby amended as follows:
I) The correction made to Article 3 of Proclamation under paragraph (1) of Corrigendum No. 1/998 is hereby deleted and the phrase “or if no buyer appears at the second auction, to acquire the property at the t100r price set for the first auction and have the ownership of the property transferred to it” is inserted after the word’ ‘buyer” on the eighth line of the Article.
2) The correction made to Article 4 of the Proclamation under paragraph (2) of Corrigendum No. 1/1998 is hereby deleted and the phrase’ ‘or if no buyer appears at the second auction, it may acquire the property at the floor price set for the first auction and have the ownership of the property transferred to it” is added after the word.. “buyer” at the end of the Article.
ማረሚያ በአማርኛው ቅጂ ላይ
[አዋጅ ቁጥር 351/1995 የከፍተኛ ትምህርት አዋጅ]
1) አዋጅ ቁጥር 354/1995 ከገጽ 2368-2373 ተብሎ የወጣው የኢሚግሬሽን አዋጅ ገጽ ቁጥሩ የተጻፈው በስህተት ስለሆነ ገጽ ቁጥሩ ከ2268-2273 ተብሎ ይነበብ፡፡
2) የኢትዮ-የመን የኢኮኖሚ የሳይንስ፤ የቴክኒክ ትብብርና የንግድ ግንኙነት ስምምነት ማጽደቂያ አዋጅ ቁጥሩ 174/1962 ተብሎ የተባለው በስህተት ስለሆነ አዋጅ ቁጥሩ 174/1991 ተብሎ ይነበብ፡፡
ማረሚያ ቁጥር 1/1994
[አዋጅ ቁጥር 257/1994 የኢትዮጵያ ብሔራዊ ደህንነት ምክር ቤት ማቋቋሚያ አዋጅ]
የነዳጅ ዋጋ ማረጋጊያ ፈንድ ማቋቋሚያ አዋጅ ቁጥር 247/1993 ከዚህ የሚከተለው እርምት ተደርጎበታል
በአንቀጽ 5 ንዑስ አንቀጽ (2) “እ.ኤ.አ.” ከሚለው ቀጥሎ “የሚቀጥለው ወር” የሚል ተጨምሮ ይነበብ
ማረሚያ ቁጥር 1/1994
[አዋጅ ቁጥር 288/1994 የብሔራዊ የግብርና ግብዓት ባለስልጣን ማቋቋሚያ አዋጅ]
የገቢ ግብር አዋጅ ቁጥር 286/1994 የሚከተሉት እርማቶች ተደርገውበታል፡፡
- አንቀጽ 13 (መ) “ከገቢ” ከሚለው ቀጥሎ “ግብር”የሚል ቃል ተጨምሮ ይነበብ
- አንቀጽ 87 ከንዑስ አንቀጽ (2)(ሀ) ቀጥሎ፤ “ለ) 20 ሺ ብር” የሚል ተጨምሮ ይነበብ::
ማረሚያ ቁጥር 2/1991
[አዋጅ ቁጥር 179/1991 የኢትዮጵያ ብሔራዊ ቤተ መዛግብትና ቤተ መጻሕፍት አዋጅ]
በኢንቨስትመንት /ማሻሻያ/ አዋጅ ቁጥር 168/1991 አንቀጽ 2(2) ስር ባለው “አንቀጽ 8(2)” “2 ፐርሰንት” የሚለው “27 ፐርሰንት” ተብሎ ይነበብ
የኢንቨስትመንት (ማሻሻያ) አዋጅ ማውጫው ስር የእንግሊዝኛው ቅጂ 373/2003 የተባለው በስህተት ስለሆነ 375/2003 ተብሎ ይነበብ
ማረሚያ ቁጥር 4/2001
[አዋጅ ቁጥር የኢትዮጵያ ሕንጻ አዋጅ]
በዚህ አዋጅ አንቀጽ 60 “ይህ አዋጅ በፌደራል ነጋሪት ጋዜጣ ታትሞ ከወጣበት ቀን ጀምሮ የጸና ይሆናል” የሚለው “ይህ አዋጅ በፌደራል ነጋሪት ጋዜጣ ታትሞ ከወጣበት ቀን ጀምሮ አንድ ዓመት ካበቃ በኋላ ተፈጻሚ ይሆናል” በሚል ይነበብ፡፡
ማረሚያ ቁጥር 4/2001
[የኢትዮጵያ ፌደራል መንግስት የፋይናንስ አስተዳደር አዋጅ 648/2001]
በኢትዮጵያ የህንጻ አዋጅ ቁጥር 624/2001 አንቀጽ 60 “ይህ አዋጅ በፌደራል ነጋሪት ጋዜጣ ታትሞ ከወጣበት ቀን ጀምሮ የጸና ይሆናል” የሚለው “ይህ አዋጅ በፌደራል ነጋሪት ጋዜጣ ታትሞ ከወጣበት ቀን ጀምሮ አንድ ዓመት ካበቃ በኋላ ተፈጻሚ ይሆናል” በሚል ይነበብ፡፡
[አዋጅ ቁጥር 374/1996 ቅርስን በሕገወጥ መንገድ ከሀገር ማስወጣትን፣ ወደሀገር ውስጥ ማስገባትንና ባለቤትነት ማዞርን ለመከላከል የተደረገውን ዓለም አቀፍ ስምምነት ለማጽደቅ የወጣ አዋጅ]
የኢንቨስትመንት (ማሻሸያ) አዋጅ ማውጫው ስር የእንግሊዝኛው ቅጂ 373/2003 የተባለው በስህተት ስለሆነ 375/2003 ተብሎ ይነበብ፡፡[iii]
ማረሚያ ቁጥር 7/2003
[የገቢ ግብር /ማሻሻያ/ አዋጅ 693/2003]
የኢትዮጵያ ፌዴራላዊ ዲሞክራሲያዊ ሪፐብ ሊክ አስፈፃሚ አካላትን ሥልጣንና ተግባር ለመወሰን በወጣው አዋጅ ቁጥር 691/2003 አንቀፅ “8 “ይህ አዋጅ በፌዴራል ነጋሪት ጋዜጣ ታትሞ ከወጣበት ቀን ከአንድ አመት በኋላ ጀምሮ የፀና ይሆናል፡፡” የሚለው “ይህ አዋጅ በፌዴራል ነጋሪት ጋዜጣ ታትሞ ከወጣበት ቀን ጀምሮ የፀና ይሆናል፡፡” ተብሎ ይነበብ፡፡
“Definition is an attempt to state in precise terms the meaning of a word or of an expression. In legislation it should be used only as an aid to clarity and to reduce vagueness as much as possible. It should be used only when necessary and should be as complete as possible. Robinson1 considers that the purpose of all nominal definition is to report or establish the meaning of a word or symbol. Word-word definition does this in the form of saying that one word means the same as another word. Word-thing definition does it in the form of saying that a word means a certain thing.“
V. C. R. A. C. CRABBE (LEGISLATIVE DRAFTING)
“Adeﬁnition is unnecessary if themeaning of theword or phrase is clear or can be readily ascertained fromthe context. Also, a word or phrase need not
be deﬁnedmerely because it is technical or unusual.However, if a deﬁnition is genuinely required, it should not be shunned merely because the term is
used only onceortwice” Peter Butt and Richard Castle (MODERN LEGAL DRAFTING A Guide to Using Clearer Language, 2nd ed.)
After writing a post ” the difficult task of defining person” I realized that the issue of “definition” is one that requires immediate attention and response from the lawmaker. Although the basic purpose of definition is clarity, most of the definitions of federal laws are confusing and difficult to understand. One of the causes for this is that the lawmaker considers definition as a necessary and inevitable part of every proclamation. The result is a lengthy list of definitions very difficult to comprehend.
Definition and the new pension law.
Article 2(5) of Private Organization Employees Pension Proclamation No. 715/2011 defines “Region” as any state referred to in Article 47(1) of the Constitution of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and includes the Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa city administrations. However, there is no provision in the proclamation mentioning or making a reference to the term “Region. It is simply defined without purpose. There is an additional problems in defining Region“. According to Article 47 of the constitution, There are only 9 regional states. Therefore, there is no constitutional ground to consider Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa city administrations as regions even for the purpose of that specific legislation. One of the cardinal principles of ‘definition’ is that the lawmaker should avoid making a rule in the name of definition. The purpose of definition is clarification, not making rules. Defining Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa city administrations as regions is making a rule as to the scope of the proclamation. Parliament can avoid such type of problems by simply providing a ‘scope’ provision and explicitly indicating that the law is applicable to Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa city administrations.
After going through some of the definitions in Federal laws, I thought it could be helpful for parliament if all the definitions from 1995 till now are compiled arranged alphabetically. This resolves the problem of consistency while using a similar term in different legislations provided that there no deliberate decision variation to signify the context that term is used.
For instance “Road” and “Vehicle” are defined in different legislations in the following way.
Vehicle (P547/07) a motor vehicle, constructed for use for conveyance of goods and includes trailers, semi-trailers and rail wagons
Vehicle (P559/08) any wheeled motor vehicle, semi trailer or trailer for use on the road with the exception of wheelchair, implement of husbandry and bicycle
Road (P66/97) highway, rural road and urban road and includes bridge
Road (P559/08) any highway, urban or rural street, parking or terminal, bridge or any other passage customarily open for vehicles
Road (P600/08) any road, street, highway, rural road or any other travel route, customarily used by vehicles other than private roads not open to all traffic
It is very difficult to conclude that the terms “Road” and “Vehicle” are defined intentionally to reflect any specific context. There is simply a variation in the use of words. Most of the time, this happens when the specific proclamations are drafted by different individuals A drafter should know how a certain term is defined in another statute, before embarking on the task of defining and giving a meaning to that legal term. However, as there is no law digest or another easy mechanism of systematic index and reference to all legislations, it would be a time consuming task to identify similar definitions.
As a result I have compiled all the definitions of legal terms used in all the proclamations and regulations from 1995 to 2003. This compilation also includes a complete list all repealed laws and corrigenda (corrections) during this period.
Below is the first entry of the compilation. The abbreviations in the bracket refer to the source of the law where that definition is taken from. I have deleted the repetitive use of the word “means” after each definition.
I would appreciate if you could leave me you constructive (…and even destructive) comments.
Academic community (P650/09) all those persons studying, teaching and doing research as permanent or visiting members of an institution
Academic officer (P650/09) research and publication officer, registrar and other similar officers
Academic staff (P351/03) an academic staff employed by a higher education institution to devote 75% of his/her time to teaching and 25% of his/her time to research or employed in research centers of the institution and devote 75% of his/her time to research an 25% of his/her time to teaching
Academic staff (P650/09) members of an institution employed in the capacity of teaching and/or research, and any other professional of the institution who shall be recognized so by senate statutes
Academic unit (P650/09) a college, faculty, school, an institute, a department or a centre established as a constituent unit of an institution
Access (P482/06) the collection, acquisition, transfer or use of genetic resources and/or community knowledge
Accident (P616/08) an occurrence associated with the operation of an aircraft, which takes place between the time any person boards the aircraft with the intention of flight until the time such person has disembarked, in which:
a) the person is injured as a result of:
(1) being in the aircraft;
(2) detached from the aircraft, or
(3) direct exposure to jet blast;
except when the injuries are from natural causes, self inflicted or inflicted by other persons, or when the injuries are to stowaways hiding outside the areas normally available to passengers and crew;
(b) the aircraft sustains damage or structural failure which:
(1)adversely affects the structural strength or performance of the aircraft; and
(2)would normally require major repair or replacement of the affected component, except for engine failure or damage, when the damage is limited to the engine, its cowlings or accessories or for damage limited to propellers, wing tips, antennas, tires or brakes failings or small dents or puncture holes in the aircraft skin; or
c) the aircraft is missing or is completely inaccessible
Accrediting Authority (P391/04) the Ministry [Ministry of Education] or a body authorized by a State in respect of the issuance of pre-accreditation licenses and accreditation certificates as the case may be
Accreditation (P391/04) the granting of a certificate of competence by the appropriate Accrediting Authority to an institution providing technical and vocational education ant training evidencing its fulfillment of the basic and additional requirements relating to the specified training standard
Addis Ababa (P87/97) includes the existing urban areas and the twenty three rural localities falling under the jurisdiction of the City Government
Administrative City (P654/09) the Administrative City of Addis Ababa or the Administrative City of Dire Dawa
Administrative costs (P621/09) shall mean those costs incurred for emoluments, allowances, benefits, purchasing goods and services, travelling and entertainments necessary for the administrative activities of a Charity or society
Administrative Decision (P515/07) shall mean for the purpose of part (10) a decision given by the Head of a government institution, either orally or in writing, on a recommendation by disciplinary or grievance handling committee in accordance with the power conferred by law or a decision given by the Head of a government institution without following the required due process
Administrative support staff (P650/09) personnel of an institution employed to provide administrative, business management, accounting, catering, maintenance, safety, security and such other services
Adulterated Fertilizer (P137/98) a fertilizer that contains any foreign substance the addition of which is likely eliminate or decrease the nutrient content of plants
Adulteration (P661/09) adding any foreign substance or ingredient to a food for commercial purpose or to be served for the public in any way or medicine other than its content or by substituting its content in whole or in part by such other substance or by storing or manufacturing it under unsanitary conditions whereby it may have been contaminated
Advance informed agreement (P655/09) a written consent granted by the Authority for the undertaking of a transaction in accordance with this Proclamation
Advertisement (P533/07) a message transmitted to publicize and promote sales of goods and services
Advocate“(P199/2000) a lawyer whose name is registered in a register in order to render advocacy services
Advocate Assistant” (P199/2000) a person who, under the guidance of an advocate, opens files of claims prepared by the advocate in the court of law and receives summons, orders and copies of judgments from courts and delivers same to the concerned persons
Advocacy Service (P199/2000) the preparation of contracts, memorandum of association, documents of amendment or dissolution, of same, or documents to be adduced in court, litigation before courts on behalf of third parties, and includes rendering any legal consultancy services for consideration or without consideration, or for direct or indirect future consideration
Aerial work (P616/08) an aircraft operation in which an aircraft is used for specialized services such as agriculture, construction, photography, surveying, observation and patrol, search and rescue or aerial advertisement
Aerodrome (P616/08) an area of land or water intended to be used wholly or in part for the landing, take-off, movement or servicing of aircraft and includes buildings, installations and equipment on or adjacent to such area used for these purposes
Agricultural development (P686/10) the production of perennial and annual crops as well as the development of animal and fishery resources, forest, wildlife, and the plantations of floriculture, vegetables and horticulture and products thereof
Agricultural Product (P372/03) a product as may, from time to time. be determined as an agricultural product by the Ministry or its designate
Agricultural Research (P79/97 ) research undertaking aimed at improving the production and productivity of plants, animals and natural resources
Agricultural Research Center (P79/97 an agricultural research organ established or to be established or administered by the Federal or Regional Government
Aid in kind (P57/96) any assistance received by the Federal Government under a bilateral or multilateral agreement, or from other sources, that is received in the form of goods or services or any other form other than money
Aid in kind (P/648/09) any assistance received by the Federal Government under a bilateral or multilateral agreement, or from other sources, that is received in the form of goods or services or any other form other than money
Aircraft (P541/07) any type of airplane, helicopter, airship whether or not controlled or directed by human agency and without being limited to devices flown by automotive power
Aircraft in flight (an) (P31/96) refers to the period from the moment when all the external doors of an aircraft are closed following embarkation until the moment when any such door is opened for disembarkation; and includes, in case of forced landing, the time until the aircraft as well as the persons and property on board are released
Aircraft in service (an) (P31/96) refers to the period starting from the time of the preflight preparation of the aircraft by ground personnel or by the crew for a specific flight until twenty-four hours after any landing; but it shall not, in any event, be less than the entire period during which the aircraft is in flight as defined in sub-Article(1) of this Article
Aircraft (P616/08) any vehicle that can derive support in the atmosphere from the reactions of the air other than the reactions of the air against the earth’s surface
Air carrier (P616/08) an air operator that engages in the provision of transportation services by aircraft for remuneration or hire, whether directly or indirectly by lease or other arrangements, on schedule or charter basis
Aircraft engine (P616/08) any engine used, or intended to be used, for propulsion of aircraft and includes all parts, appurtenances and accessories thereof other than propellers
Air navigation (P616/08) the operation of guiding an aircraft from one place to another, and includes the fixing of the position of an aircraft
air navigation facility (P616/08) any area, lights, apparatus or equipment for disseminating weather information, signaling, radio directional finding, radio communication or any other facility for guiding or controlling flight in the air or the landing and take-off of aircraft
Aircraft operator (P616/08) any person engaged in an aircraft operation
Air route (P616/08) the airspace designated by the Authority for air navigation
Air service (P616/08) an air transport service or an aerial work service, whether regular or casual
Air traffic control service (P616/08) provision of service to prevent collisions between aircrafts or with obstructions, and for expediting and maintaining of an orderly flow of air traffic
Airworthiness (P616/08) the ability of an aircraft, with all its necessary components and accessories, to perform its function satisfactorily as determined by the Authority
Animal (P117/98) cattle, sheep, goat, camel, poultry, pig, bee and includes other animals which the authority for the purpose of this proclamation designates as animals
Animal Product (P117/98) meat, milk, butter, cheese, egg, honey wax, sheep hair, as well as wool and includes other products which the authority designates as animal products
Animal by-product (P117/98) everything of value produced from the slaughter of animal such as hide, skin, horn, hoof , blood, bone and meat meal and includes other by-products which the authority in the future designates as animal by products
Apiculture resources (P660/09) colony of honeybees residing in forests and hives and honey source plant potentials available in nature
Appliances (P616/08) instruments, equipment, apparatus, parts or accessories which are used or intended to be used, in the navigation, operation or control of aircraft in flight including parachutes and communication equipment and any other mechanism installed in or attached to aircraft during flight, and which are not parts of aircraft, aircraft engines or propellers
Appointee (P668/2010) includes the following:
a) the President of the Republic, the Prime Minister, the Deputy Prime Minister, Ministers, State Ministers, Deputy Ministers, Commissioners, Deputy Commissioners, Director Generals and Deputy Director Generals;
b) Mayors and other appointees of the Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa city administrations;
c) Presidents, Deputy Presidents and judges of regular and municipal courts;
d) appointees of the defense forces and police;
e) ambassadors, heads of consuls and other diplomatic missions;
f) the Auditor General and the Deputy Auditor General;
g) the Governor and Deputy Governor of the National Bank;
h) Members of Board of Directors, Managers and Deputy Managers of Public Enterprises;
i) Presidents and Deputy Presidents of government higher education institution
Apprentice a person undergoing apprenticeship pursuant to a tripartite agreement concluded among a training institution, an organization and a trainee
Apprenticeship (P391/04) job training undertaken by a trainee in an organization pursuant to an agreement concluded among a training institution, an organization and trainee to enable the trainee to put to practice the technical and vocational education and training he acquired in a training institution and to be acquainted with work
Appropriation (P57/96) any authorization of the council of Peoples’ Representatives to pay money out of the Consolidated Fund
Appropriation (P/648/09) the endorsement by the Minister of the budget allocation based on the budget approved by the House of People’s Representatives
Asset (P668/2010) any movable or immovable or tangible or intangible property and includes landholdings and debts
Assistance (P10/95) includes comprehensive measures taken to prevent the coming, in future, of a disaster area under a similar situation, in addition to meeting the need of the victims of disaster for food and other basic necessities of life
Assistance (P383/04) include all measures taken to meet the need of the victims of disaster for food and other basic necessities of life
Assistance Programme (P10/95) includes the supply and distribution of food and other materials necessary for a living, the availability of clean drinking-water, support in health and nutrients, support extended to the elderly and the disabled, the prevention of destruction to rural wealth such as animals, support for the development of supplementary economic activities besides agriculture, the rehabilitation of the environment, other developmental activities that help combat drought and measures relating to schemes which create job opportunities in connection with assistance
Assistance programme (P383/04) includes the provision of financial aid, the supply and distribution of food and other materials necessary for a living, the availability of clean drinking water, support in health and nutrients and the prevention of destruction to rural wealth such as animals
Asylum-seeker (P409/04) any person who presents himself at the border or frontier claiming to be a refugee or any person is in Ethiopia and who has lodged an application with the competent authorities for recognition as a refugee and is awaiting a final decision on his application
Atomic energy (P571/08) any type of energy emitted from radio-isotopes, nuclear reactions, nuclear reactors, X-ray equipment or other technical apparatus emitting ionizing radiation
Audio-visual work (P410/04) a work that consists of a series of related images, which impart the impression of motion, with or without accompanying sounds, susceptible of being made visible; by any appropriate device, and includes a cinematographic or other film
Auditor of Political Party (P573/08) a person, having a certified professional competency, designated by a political party as auditor without any relation of whatever to the designating party
Author (P410/04) the person who has intellectually created a work and includes-
a) in the case of a computer program, person who has created the program;
b) in the case of a photograph, the person responsible for its composition
Authorized dealer (P591/08) any person other than a bank, which is authorized by the National Bank to engage in foreign exchange transactions
Aviation personnel (P616/08) any individual who carries out a civil aviation operational or technical function and includes:
a) any individual who engages as pilot in command, pilot, mechanic or member of the crew, or who navigates an aircraft while the aircraft is underway;
b) any individual in charge of the inspection or maintenance of aircraft, aircraft engines or propellers or appliances; or
c)any individual who serves in the capacity of flight controller, air traffic controller or aircraft dispatcher officer
Award (P110/98) a decision in writing rendered by an arbitrator(s) on a reference made otherwise than by order of court in the course of suit by parties to a compromise, conciliation or arbitral submission or other similar matters
HOUSE OF PEOPLES’ REPRESENTATIVES WORKING PROCEDURE AND MEMBERS’ CODE OF CONDUCT (AMENDMENT) PROCLAMATION no. 470/2005
FEDERAL DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF ETHIOPIA HOUSE OF PEOPLES’ REPRESENTATIVES WORKING PROCEDURE AND MEMBERS’ CODE OF CONDUCT (AMENDMENT) PROCLAMATION
WHEREAS, it is important to enable the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia House of Peoples’
Representatives to effectively discharge its powers and functions as well as the responsibility vested with by the public as enshrined in the Constitution;
WHEREAS, it is appropriate to organize the working mechanisms and structures of the Committees of the House in consideration of the Federal Government Organs structures;
WHEREAS, it is necessary to clearly legislate for the rights and duties of members of the House as well as organization and role of party whips that have seat in the House;
WHEREAS, it is proper to make the working procedure and code of conduct of the House consistent with the Constitution and international parliamentarian tenets as well as to promote democratic traits and encourage transparency;
NOW, THEREFORE, in accordance with Articles 55(1) and 59(2) of the Constitution of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, it is hereby proclaimed as follows:
PART ONE GENERAL
This proclamation may be cited as the “Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia House of Peoples’ Representatives Working Procedure and Members’ Code of Conduct (Amendment) Proclamation No. 470/2005”
In this proclamation, unless the context otherwise requires:
1/ “Constitution” means the Constitution of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia;
2/ “House” means the House of Peoples’ Representatives established in accordance with Article 53 of the Constitution;
3/“Committee” means Standing, Ad hoc… Committee established by the House to undertake a certain activity whenever necessary;
4/ “Standing Committee” means a body set up by the House to enhance the duty of the House within the boundary of the powers and functions given to it under this proclamation;
5/ “Ad hoc Committee” means a body established by the House whenever it feels there is an urgent situation and where deemed necessary to carry out activities that may not be directly undertaken by other Committees;
6/ “Sub Committee” means a Committee set up by any of the Committees of the House from among its members with a view to act upon its work effectively;
7/ “Standing Sub Committee” means a Committee set up by the House to act as a supporting body whenever the Standing Committee is under a heavy workload.
8/ “Coordinating Committee” means a committee, which comprises the Speaker and Deputy Speaker of the House, the chairpersons and deputy chairpersons of the Standing Committees and head of the Secretariat of the House.
9/ “Resource Person” means a person or body invited to expound their views on draft laws of the House or committees of the House as the case may be;
10/ “First Reading” means the reading and discussion process held on the basic content of the draft law to be endorsed by the House or to be referred to the pertinent Standing committee for further scrutiny.
11/ “Second Reading” means the discussion on the report and recommendations of the Standing Committee, to which the draft law was referred by the House for further scrutiny subsequent to the first reading.
12/“Third Reading” means the discussion of the House on the returned draft law which was referred to the Standing Committee for further re-examination subsequent to the second reading.
13/“Technical Correction” means rectification of errors of language or otherwise which in no way modifies the substance of the given law.
14/ “Government Bodies” means institution that are directly oversighted by the House or Committees and budgeted by Government.
15/ “Government Whips” means members of the House represented by the political party or coalition of political parties that got majority seat in the House to coordinate activities of their respective party(s).
16/ “Main Opposition Party Whips” means members of the House represented by a political party that has got the next number of seat to the party or coalition of parties that formed government to coordinate the activity of the party in the House.
17/ “Whips of the Second Opposition Party” means members of the House that are represented by the party that has got majority seat in the House next to the main opposition party to coordinate activities of the party in the House.
18/ “Government Draft Law” means a draft law prepared and presented by the Council of Ministers.