Federations and Second Chambers
[Taken from FEDERALIAM TEACHING MATERIAL( JLSRI) by Dr. Assefa Fissha]
…It is argued that a second chamber based on a different composition and representing the interests of states, more specifically less populous states, is an institution that reflects the normative diversity inherent in federalism. It is also suggested that second chambers reflecting the entrenched representation of the states distinguishes federations from other types of polities. This chapter, comparative in its approach, commences by considering the underlying rationale for having second chambers and then proceeds to their manner of composition, election and more importantly,
the powers entrusted upon them by their respective constitutions. The main point that the author develops is the idea that the Ethiopian Constitution, by establishing a non-legislative upper house, runs the risk of concentration of power at the center, to the exclusion of the states, and consequently leaves the states alone. The Constitution fails to ensure the constituent units‟ proper place in the institutions of power sharing as well as in the process of policy-making at federal level and by doing so it betrays the federal idea significantly..
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