CHAPTER 4. The Executive Power
Part 1. The King and His Prerogatives
The Throne of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan is hereditary to the dynasty of King Abdullah Bin Al-Hussein in a direct line through the male heirs pursuant to the following provisions:
- The Royal title shall pass from the holder of the Throne to his eldest son, then to the eldest son of that eldest son, and in linear succession in a similar process thereafter. Should the eldest son die before the Throne devolves upon him, his eldest son shall inherit the Throne, even if the deceased has brothers. The King may, however, select one of his brothers as heir apparent. In this event, the title to the Throne shall pass to him from the holder of the Throne.
- If the person entitled to the Throne does not have a male heir, it shall pass to his eldest brother. If he has no brothers, to the eldest son of his eldest brother. If his eldest brother has no son, to the eldest son of his other brothers according to the seniority in age of the brothers.
- In the absence of brothers and nephews, the title to the Throne shall pass to the uncles and their descendants, in the order prescribed in Paragraph (b).
- Should the last King die without an heir in the manner prescribed above, the Throne shall devolve upon the person selected by the Parliament from amongst the descendants of the founder of the Arab Renaissance, the late King Hussein Bin Ali.
- It is a condition for the person who shall ascend the Throne to be a Moslem, mentally sound, born by a legitimate wife, and of Moslem parents.
- None of the persons who have been excluded from succession by a Royal Decree on the ground of their unsuitability shall ascend the Throne.Such exclusion shall not include the descendants of such person. Such Decree shall be countersigned by the Prime Minister and four Ministers at least, of whom shall be the Ministers of Interior and of Justice.
- The King attains his majority upon the completion of eighteen lunar years of his age. If the Throne devolves upon a person who is below this age, the powers of the King shall be exercised by the Regent or the Council of Regency who shall have been appointed by a Royal Decree issued by the reigning King. If he dies without making such nomination, the Council of Ministers shall appoint the Regent or the Council of Regency.
- Should the King become unable to exercise his power on account of his illness, his powers shall be exercised by a Viceregent or a Council of Viceregents. The Viceregent or the Council of Viceregents shall be appointed by a Royal Decree. When the King is unable to make such appointment, it shall be made by the Council of Ministers.
- Should the King intend to leave the country, he shall, before his departure and by a Royal Decree, appoint a Viceregent or a Council of Viceregents to exercise his powers during the period of his absence. The Viceregent or Council of Viceregents shall observe any conditions which may be contained in that Decree. If the absence of the King extends to more than four months and the Parliament is not in session, it shall be summoned immediately to consider the matter.
- Before the Regent or Viceregent or the member of the Council of Regency or of the Council of Viceregents assumes his office, he shall take the oath prescribed in Article (29) of this Constitution before the Council of Ministers.
- Should the Regent or Viceregent or a member of the Council of Regency or of the Council of Viceregents die or become incapable of performing his functions, the Council of Ministers shall appoint a suitable person to replace him.
- The age of a Regent or Viceregent or a member of the Council of Regency or of the Council of Viceregents shall not be less than (30) lunar years. However, a male relative of the King who has completed eighteen lunar years of his age may be appointed.
- If it is impossible for who has the title to the Throne to rule due to a mental illness, the Council of Ministers, on confirmation of that, shall immediately convene the Parliament. Should that illness be definitely confirmed, the Parliament shall decide to terminate his rule, whereupon the title to the Throne shall be transferred to the person entitled thereto after him according to the provisions of the Constitution. If the House of Representatives stands dissolved at that time or if its term had expired and the new House has not been elected, the former House of Representatives shall be convened for this purpose.
The King shall upon his succession to the Throne take an oath before the Parliament, which shall convene under the chairmanship of the Speaker of the Senate, to uphold the Constitution and be loyal to the Nation.
The King is the Head of the State and is immune from every liability and responsibility.
The King shall ratify the laws, promulgate them and order the enactment of the regulations necessary for their implementation, provided that they shall not contain whatever violates the provisions thereof.
The King is the Supreme Commander of the Land, Naval and Air Forces.
The King declares war, makes peace and concludes treaties and agreements.
- Treaties and agreements which entail any expenditures to the Treasury of the State or affect the public or private rights of Jordanians shall not be valid unless approved by the Parliament; and in no case shall the secret terms in a treaty or agreement be contrary to the overt terms.
The King issues orders for the holding of elections to the House of Representatives in accordance with the provisions of the law.
- The King convenes the Parliament, inaugurates, adjourns, and prorogues it in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution.
- The King may dissolve the House of Representatives.
- The King may dissolve the Senate or relieve one of its members of the membership.
The King appoints the Prime Minister, dismisses him and accepts his resignation, and appoints the Ministers, dismisses them and accepts their resignation upon the recommendation of the Prime Minister.
The King appoints the members of the Senate and appoints the Speaker of the Senate from amongst them and accepts their resignation.
The King creates, confers and withdraws civil and military ranks, medals and the other honorific titles. He may delegate this authority to another person by a special law.
- Currency shall be minted in the name of the King in implementation of the law.
The King has the right to the special pardon and to remit the sentence, but the general pardon shall be determined by a special law.
No death sentence shall be executed except after ratification by the King, and every such sentence shall be placed before him by the Council of Ministers accompanied by its opinion thereon.
- Subject to the provisions of paragraph (2) of this article: The King shall exercise his powers by a Royal Decree, and the Royal Decree shall be signed by the Prime Minister and the Minister or Ministers concerned. The King shall express his concurrence by placing his signature above the said signatures.
- The King shall exercise his powers without a royal decree signed by the Prime Minister and the Minister or Ministers concerned in the following cases:
- Choosing the Crown Prince.
- Appointing a Viceroy.
- Appointing the Speaker of the Senate and its members, dissolving the Senate, and accepting the resignation of any of its members or relieving members of their membership.
- Appointing the chair of the Judicial Council and accepting his resignation.
- Appointing the chair of the Constitutional Court and its members and accepting their resignations.
- Appointing the commander of the army, the director of intelligence, and director of the gendarmerie and terminating their services.
Part 2. Ministers
The Council of Ministers shall consist of the Prime Minister, as Head, and of a number of ministers pursuant to the need and public interest.
No person shall hold the position of Minister and the like except a Jordanian.
The Prime Minister and Ministers shall, before assuming their functions, take the following oath before the King:
“I swear by Almighty God to be loyal to the King, uphold the Constitution, serve the Nation and conscientiously perform the duties entrusted to me”.
The Minister may not purchase or lease any Government property even if this is in public auction. He may not, during his ministerial office, be a member of the board of directors of any company, take part in any commercial or financial business or receive a salary from any company.
The Council of Ministers shall undertake the responsibility of administering all affairs of the State, internal and external, with the exception of those affairs that were or may be entrusted in accordance with this Constitution or any law to any other person or body.
- The authorities of the Prime Minister, the Ministers and the Council of Ministers shall be defined by regulations established by the Council of Ministers and ratified by the King.
The Minister may be entrusted with the functions of one or more Ministries, as stated in the decree of appointment.
The Minister shall be responsible for the administering of all the affairs pertaining to his Ministry and shall refer to the Prime Minister any matter not falling within his competence.
- The Prime Minister shall take actions within his powers and competence and shall refer the other matters to the Council of Ministers for taking the necessary decisions in their regards.
The Prime Minister and Ministers shall sign the decisions of the Council of Ministers, and these decisions shall be submitted to the King for their ratification in the cases required under this Constitution or any law or regulation enacted thereunder. These decisions shall be implemented by the Prime Minister and Ministers, each within his competence.
The verbal or written orders of the King shall not release the Ministers from their responsibility.
- In the event of the resignation or dismissal of the Prime Minister, all Ministers shall be considered as having necessarily resigned.
- In the event of the death of the Prime Minister the cabinet continues, headed by the Deputy Prime Minister or the most senior Minister, as needed, until the formation of a new cabinet.
The Prime Minister and Ministers shall be jointly responsible before the House of Representatives for the public policy of the State; and each Minister shall as well be responsible before the House of Representatives for the functions of his Ministry.
The Prime Minister or the Minister who is a member of either the Senate or the House of Representatives shall be entitled to vote in his House and to speak in both Houses. However, the Ministers who are not of the members of either House may speak in both of them without having the right to vote. The Ministers or their deputies shall have the right of priority to the other members to address both Houses. The Minister who receives the Ministry salary shall not receive, at the same time, the allocations of the membership in either House.
The session for the vote of no confidence in the Council of Ministers or in any Minister shall be held either at the request of the Prime Minister or at a request signed by a number of not less than ten members of the House of Representatives.
- The vote of no confidence shall be postponed for one time the period of which shall not exceed ten days if such is requested by the Minister concerned or by the Council of Ministers. The House shall not be dissolved during this period.
- Every formed Council of Ministers shall place its ministerial statement to the House of Representatives within one month of the date of its formation if the House is in session and request the vote of confidence on that statement.
- If the House of Representatives is not in session, it shall be called to convene in an extraordinary session; and the Council of Ministers shall place its ministerial statement and request the vote of confidence on that statement within one month from the date of its formation.
- If the House of Representatives stands dissolved, the Council of Ministers shall place its ministerial statement and request the vote of confidence on that statement within a month from the date of the convening of the new House.
- For the purposes of Paragraphs (3), (4), and (5) of this Article, the Council of Ministers shall obtain the vote of confidence if the absolute majority of the members of the House of Representatives votes favorably for it.
The motion of no confidence in the Council of Ministers or in one of the Ministers may be raised before the House of Representatives.
- If the House decides a vote of no confidence in the Council of Ministers by the absolute majority of the total number of its members, it should resign.
- If the decision of the vote of no confidence concerns one of the Ministers, he should resign his office.
Ministers shall be tried for crimes attributed to them resulting from the performance of their functions before the competent civil courts in the Capital, in accordance with the provisions of the law.
The House of Representatives shall have the right to refer the Ministers to the Attorney General along with stating the justifying reasons. The decision of referral shall not be issued except by the majority of the members of whom the House of Representatives is composed.
The Minister who shall be accused by the Attorney General upon the issuance of the decision of referral by the House of Representatives shall be suspended from office; his resignation shall not prevent the institution of proceedings against him nor the continuation of his trial.