Charter of the South Pacific
|Charter of the South Pacific
|An Act of the Assembly of the South Pacific
|Sandaoguo and working group
|26 May 2016
The Charter of the South Pacific was constructed during the 2016 Great Council by Sandaoguo and their Working Draft Group. This is a constitutional law and requires and a 60% super majority in order for any amendment to pass. It is currently the most powerful document of the Coalition. Here are the contents of the chapter:
The Charter of the Coalition of the South Pacific
The Assembly of the Coalition of the South Pacific, representing our diverse community, convenes to establish this fundamental law of our region, to uphold democratic principles and rights, and provide for the security of our unified community both on the forums and in the game.
Defining the supreme laws of our community
(1) Laws that form the foundation of our community, are considered fundamental to governance, or otherwise are considered of great importance by the Coalition, are to be known as “constitutional laws” and marked as such.
(2) Constitutional laws passed by the Assembly hold precedence and supremacy over all other laws, regulations, and policies of all branches of government.
(3) This Charter is a constitutional law holding supremacy over all others, and defines the purpose of our government and its framework.
(4) Any constitutional law passed by the Assembly that directly affects the gameside community or its home governance, as determined by the Chair of the Assembly, must also receive the consent of the gameside before coming into force, where that consent shall not require more than a three-fifths supermajority in a vote.
(5) Constitutional laws passed by the Local Council hold the same status as those passed by the Assembly, limited in their scope and force to the realms of Local Council jurisdiction, but may not contradict this Charter or any law, regulation, or policy of the Assembly, Cabinet, or Council on Regional Security.
Outlining the sovereignty of the Coalition and the origins of legitimacy.
(1) The sovereignty of the region lies with the Coalition of the South Pacific. No other group claiming legitimacy will be recognized. The integrity of the Coalition, in its forums and the region, shall not be challenged or violated by any government official, internal dissidents, or other regions.
(2) Authority and legitimacy are held jointly by the region and the forum, and the union between the two is what defines the Coalition. No illegitimate invader or usurper of the region shall be recognized.
Rights and Freedoms
Recognizing the democratic rights and freedoms of all members of the Coalition.
(1) All members of the South Pacific will enjoy the freedoms of expression, speech, assembly, and the press, limited only by reasonable moderation policies.
(2) The right to a fair trial and defense against criminal accusations will not be abridged. No member may be subject to any bill of attainder, be tried for the same crime more than once, or be tried ex post facto.
(3) No member, who had joined the region in good faith, may be banned or ejected from the in-game region without the due process of law.
(4) No member may be denied the right to vote or hold office, unless prohibited by constitutional law.
(5) No law may be passed by the Assembly that directly affects the activities of the in-game community without the consent of the in-game community.
(6) The High Court may strike down any general law or action that violates any right or freedom found in this Charter.
Establishing Legislative authority in The Assembly.
(1) The Assembly holds supreme legislative authority in the Coalition, and is comprised of all eligible legislators.
(2) The Assembly will elect a legislator as Chair for a term lasting four months. The Chair is responsible for maintaining order and decorum, and helping guide Assembly debate into the creation of bills. If a Chair is recalled, loses legislator status, or is otherwise not in office, a new Chair will be elected for a new term lasting four months. The date, time, and manner of electing the Chair will be set by the Assembly in a law.
(3) The Chair may appoint a deputy or deputies, to whom the Chair may publicly delegate any powers, responsibilities, or special projects of the Chair, subject to all regulations and restrictions imposed upon the Chair by law. The Chair may dismiss such deputies.
(4) A standing commission of legislators will be tasked with granting and revoking legislator status. All residents of the Coalition are eligible to attain legislator status through an application. Continued legislator status requires active membership and good behaviour.
The Local Council
Establishing home rule for the in-game region residents.
(1) The Local Council will be the local government of the in-game community, composed of three or more residents of the South Pacific, and will represent the interests of all players in the region, moderate the Regional Message Board, encourage activity on the gameside, and administrate itself on issues unique to the in-game community.
(2) The Local Council is entitled to self-administration within its jurisdiction on local issues, but may not pass laws or regulations that contradict this Charter or constitutional laws passed by the Assembly. To that end, the Assembly may not enact any law, nor the Cabinet deliver any directive, that is solely related to an issue local to the in-game community, except as done under the terms of this Charter.
(3) The Local Council may not be denied the authority to run regional polls, create and pin Dispatches, and to suppress messages on the Regional Message Board according to a standard moderation policy. However, it may not alter the regional flags or tags, and may not send out mass telegrams, without the approval of the Delegate.
(4) To help promote inter-governmental relations, the Local Council may send a representative to the Assembly whose term must not exceed the Local Council’s. The method of selection will be decided by the Local Council.
Establishing an executive branch consisting of the prime minister and the cabinet.
(1) The Prime Minister will be the head of government and the leader of the Cabinet. They will be responsible for the overall coordination of executive activities, being a liaison between the government and the community, and protecting the Coalition.
(2) The Cabinet will consist of ministers with the following portfolios: Foreign Affairs, Culture, Engagement, and Defense.
(3) As leader of the Cabinet, the Prime Minister is responsible for overseeing a collective Cabinet agenda, and may give directions and instructions to the ministers. Disputes within the Cabinet are subject to the majority decision and collective responsibility; where there is no majority the Prime Minister’s vote shall be the deciding one.
(4) The Office of World Assembly Legislation will be a permanent executive office, which will be led by a Director, responsible for coordinating the Coalition's activities in the World Assembly, providing assistance in drafting resolutions, and issuing voting recommendations on World Assembly proposals. At the start of each Cabinet term, the Director will be appointed by the Prime Minister for a term coinciding with the Cabinet's. In any vacancy, a new Director will be appointed by the Prime Minister to serve the remainder of the term.
(5) Members of the Executive are required to hold legislator status.
(6) Executive elections will be held every four months, where the Prime Minister and all Cabinet positions will be up for election.
(7) The date, time, and manner of elections will be set by the Assembly in a law.
Minister of Culture
(8) The Minister of Culture will be responsible for supporting the roleplay community and organizing regional cultural activities, events, and exchanges.
Minister of Engagement
(9) The Minister of Engagement will be responsible for recruiting and integrating new players into the Coalition's government and community, maintaining public infrastructure such as dispatches and other guides, setting unified presentation standards, and providing graphics to the government and citizens of the Coalition.
Minister of Foreign Affairs
(10) The Minister of Foreign Affairs will be the Coalition’s chief diplomat. They will be responsible for establishing the government’s foreign policy program, communicating with allies, and coordinating with the military on foreign policy priorities when necessary.
(11) The Minister of Foreign Affairs holds the sole power to initiate treaty negotiations with other regions, groups, and organizations, but may designate officers to handle those negotiations. Upon completion of a treaty negotiation, the Minister must present it to the full executive for majority approval, before submitting it to the Assembly for ratification.
(12) The Minister of Foreign Affairs will be responsible for establishing standards for the creation and maintenance of consulates and embassies.
Minister of Defense
(13) The Minister of Defense will be the civilian leader of the armed forces of the Coalition, the South Pacific Special Forces. In conjunction with a group of Generals, the Minister of Defense will be responsible for the defense of the Coalition, building military activity, and conducting military operations.
(14) The Minister of Defense may elect to establish an intelligence office, in equal coordination with the Council on Regional Security.
(15) The executive may exercise the collective authority of executive orders, by unanimous consent among the Prime Minister and Cabinet ministers. Executive orders may only be issued to address an immediate and pressing issue created by ambiguity or holes in a particular law, which will immediately have the effect of law.
(16) Upon declaring an executive order, the order will be presented automatically to the Assembly for three days of debate, followed by a vote according to legislative rules, where it will expire and its effects shall be reversed if the Assembly does not incorporate it into law.
(17) The Prime Minister, Cabinet ministers, and other executive offices may elect to appoint deputies and advisors, who will be considered junior members of their respective offices, but will not have voting rights in any executive decision.
Establishing a Head of State.
(1) The Delegate will be the head of state of the Coalition. They will be responsible for helping maintain the security of the region, promoting growth and activity, and serving as an advisor to the forum-side government. Barring reasonable circumstances, the Delegate will hold the in-game Delegate seat. No person may be Delegate if they have participated, in whole or in part and at any time, in any coup d'etat of the Coalition or any of its allies, excluding normal raiding, defending, or liberation efforts as part of an organized military.
(2) The Delegate will work with the Local Council in moderating the Regional Message Board, fulfilling Regional Officer positions, promoting gameside activities, and representing the preferences of the gameside community.
(3) The Delegate must fulfill in-game actions required by law but assigned to others if those actions can only be taken by the person holding the in-game Delegate seat.
(4) Delegate elections will be held every six months.
(5) The date, time, and manner of electing the Delegate will be set by the Assembly in a law, but must include the participation of the gameside community.
the high court
Creating a supreme judicial authority for the Coalition.
(1) The High Court will consist of one Chief Justice and a number of Associate Justices, and will hold exclusive judicial authority in the Coalition.
(2) The procedure for the appointment of the justices will be defined in a law by the Assembly.
(3) Procedures for the conduct of criminal trials and civil cases will be defined in a law by the Assembly.
(4) The High Court has the power to declare any general law, regulation, directive, determination or any other official act of government, in whole or in part, void upon a determination that it violates the terms of this Charter or any other constitutional law.
(5) The High Court may reconcile contradictions within the Charter, constitutional laws, general laws, Cabinet directives, and Local Council laws and regulations, maintaining the least amount of disruption to the intended purposes of the contradictory parts.
(6) The High Court may clarify and interpret provisions of law when presented with a Legal Question about them.
(7) The High Court holds the sole power to conduct a criminal trial.
The CRS and CG
Establishing a central authority for protecting the Coalition’s security.
(1) The Council on Regional Security will be composed of experienced and trustworthy members of the Coalition, and will be responsible for monitoring and responding to regional security issues. The Council will choose a Chair as needed, who will fulfill all secretarial requirements of the Council that may arise.
Membership of the Council on Regional Security
(2) The minimum qualifications for membership in the Council on Regional Security are: maintaining a nation in the South Pacific and having served at least six consecutive months as a legislator or two terms in the Local Council.
(3) Eligible members may become members of the Council on Regional Security via two methods, either application to the Council itself, or nomination by the Delegate and Prime Minister.
(4) If applying directly to the Council, applicants should explain why they are well suited to protect regional security. Applications will remain private. The Council will review the application and determine whether or not the applicant is well suited. If the application is approved, the Council will forward the nomination to the Assembly for approval via a three-fifths majority vote.
(5) The Delegate and Prime Minister may jointly nominate any person meeting the requirements for membership and who are well suited to protect regional security. Prior to the nomination, the Delegate and Prime Minister will consult with the Council for their advice. To ensure collegiality and prevent dysfunction, if two-thirds of the members of the Council object to the prospective nominee’s membership, the nomination will not move forward. If no such objection exists, then the nomination will be submitted to the Assembly for approval via three-fifths majority vote.
(6) If a majority of the Council deems a member to be a threat to regional security, they will be suspended from the Council pending an official investigation and report to the Assembly. Following the investigation, the Assembly must vote on whether to remove or reinstate the member.
(7) Participation, in whole or in part and at any time, in any coup d’etat or invasion of the Coalition or any of its allies will disqualify a prospective or sitting member from membership in the Council on Regional Security immediately and permanently. Participation in normal raiding, defending, or liberation efforts as part of an organized military will not be considered a violation of this clause.
Powers of the Council on Regional Security
(8) The Council on Regional Security will be responsible for establishing an appropriate cap on endorsements, ensuring that such a cap is not detrimental to the growth of the region. Enforcement of the endorsement cap should be done with leniency if a violator does not pose a significant risk to regional security.
(9) During a coup d’etat, whether committed by outside forces, infiltrators, or duly elected officials, the Council on Regional Security may declare a state of emergency, until such a time that a legitimate government is restored. All necessary measures may be taken to defeat a coup d’etat or hostile invasion, except that the legitimate Assembly may not be suspended.
(10) The Council on Regional Security, the Prime Minister, and the Delegate will establish a line of succession for the Delegate seat.
(11) The Council on Regional Security shall designate an individual as Intelligence Coordinator, who must be notified of and approve all intelligence and counter-intelligence operations. The Intelligence Coordinator will be responsible for disseminating any and all intelligence to the Council on Regional Security and other bodies as needed. The Intelligence Coordinator and the Minister of Defense will maintain a regional intelligence classification system as necessary for ensuring information security.
Establishing an authority for maintaining influence and endorsements to defend the region.
(12) The Coral Guard will be composed of trusted members of the Coalition, and will be responsible for maintaining high endorsements and influence levels. The Coral Guard will choose a Chair as needed, who will fulfill all secretarial requirements of the Coral Guard that may arise.
Membership of the Coral Guard
(13) The minimum qualifications for membership in the Coral Guard are: maintaining a World Assembly member nation in the South Pacific; having served at least six consecutive months as a legislator or two terms in the Local Council; and meeting requirements for influence and endorsements which are set and published by the Council on Regional Security.
(14) Eligible members of the Coral Guard may submit an application directly to the Council on Regional Security in which they describe why they should be trusted with the ability to maintain high endorsement and influence levels and why they are capable of maintaining such high endorsement and influence levels.
(15) Continued membership in the Coral Guard is predicated upon meeting eligibility requirements. Should any member of the Coral Guard fail to meet those requirements, they will lose membership and all the powers and privileges that come with it if they do not meet the requirements within a week of notification.
(16) Members of the Coral Guard may be removed at any time by a majority vote of the Council on Regional Security or recall by the Assembly.
Powers and Responsibilities of the Coral Guard
(17) Members of the Coral Guard are responsible for maintaining high levels of endorsements and influence in the region as well as promoting a growth-oriented endorsement culture in the region, subject to the limitations of the endorsement cap set by the Council on Regional Security.
(18) During a state of emergency, the Coral Guard will be required to execute any and all directives by the Council on Regional Security in order to restore the legitimate government of the region. When nations must be ejected or banned from the region, the Council on Regional Security will have the power to order any member of the Coral Guard to do so.
(19) The Coral Guard will have the power, subject to the limitations of the endorsement cap set by the Council on Regional Security, to build infrastructure and conduct events to promote the growth of endorsements in the region, particularly among the Council on Regional Security and Coral Guard.
Creating an official military for the purposes of regional defense, war, and gameplay.
(1) The South Pacific Special Forces will be the official military forces of the Coalition. Their responsibilities will be to enact the government’s military policies abroad, foster activity for the region, and serve as a representative of the Coalition’s power and influence.
(2) The military will be led by the Minister of Defense, along with a corps of generals appointed by the Minister and approved by the Assembly. The Minister and general corps may establish further hierarchy, create programs, and appoint deputies as they see necessary.
(3) The military will have the support of the Coalition in conducting operations to protect innocent regions from attack and oppression and promote legitimate, native democratic institutions across the world. The military may not colonize or annex any region without the express permission of the Cabinet and the Assembly, by majority vote of both chambers. Nor may the military attack, subjugate, purge, destroy, or vandalize any regions, excepting those regions which espouse hateful ideologies and those regions against which the Coalition has declared an official state of war.
(4) The Minister of Defense will coordinate with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, to ensure that no military activities harm the government’s diplomatic affairs or public relations
Recalls and Motions of No Confidence
Establishing a method to hold government officials to account.
(1) Any official of the Coalition may be recalled by an Assembly resolution passed with a three-fifths majority of those voting. a. Recalls should only be initiated for dereliction of duty, abuse of authority, or violations of the law, and not for purposes of political rivalry. b. Upon initiation, recall resolutions must be debated for three days and receive a motion and second before being put to vote. c. Upon passage, the recalled official will immediately be removed from office.
(2) A Motion of No Confidence may be initiated by the Assembly if the members have lost faith in the effectiveness and activities of the Prime Minister and the Cabinet. Motions of No Confidence must be debated for three days and receive a motion and a second before being moved to vote. Passage requires three-fifths majority support of those voting, and triggers a special election for all Cabinet offices.
Global Administration and Moderation Team
Creating an independent, apolitical body to manage off-site communications.
(1) The Off-Site Administration Team will be responsible for the technical maintenance of the region's Discord servers, forums, and the integrity of the database. Administrators will not be given responsibilities of a political nature.
(2) The Off-Site Administration Team will be responsible for the appointment and removal of its own members, except when an administrator is removed from the position following a guilty verdict in a fair trial for abuse of administrative powers. Additionally, new administrators must be approved by a majority of the Assembly before being granted administrator permissions.
(3) The Off-Site Administration Team must create standard administration and moderation policies. These policies will be submitted to the Assembly for a one-week review and comment period before going into effect.
(4) While the Off-Site Administration Team may appoint global moderators if needed, individual Ministers, the Chair of the Assembly, and roleplay moderators primarily will be responsible for the moderation of their dedicated Discord servers and forums.
Setting a procedure for amendment of the Charter and constitutional laws.
(1) The Assembly may amend any provision of the Charter or constitutional laws passed by the Assembly with a three-fifths supermajority. These amendments must be constitutional in nature, and amendments to the Charter must address the structure or framework of government. Bills that may exist as general laws, as determined by the Chair of the Assembly, should not be placed in the Charter or constitutional laws.
(2) Any amendment to the Charter or constitutional laws that directly affects the gameside community or its home governance, as determined by the Chair of the Assembly, must also receive the consent of the gameside community before coming into force, where the consent shall not require more than a three-fifths supermajority in a vote. Additionally, the Local Council may originate amendments to its structure in the Charter, which must receive the consent of the Assembly before coming into force.
(3) The Local Council will determine the qualifications and processes for amendments to its own constitutional laws.
Setting a procedure for constitutional conventions.
(1) The Assembly may call a constitutional convention, wherein the Charter and laws of the Coalition can be rewritten or amended in a systematic manner. These conventions shall be known as Great Councils and be presided over by a chair responsible for maintaining decorum, compiling proposals, recognizing motions, and recording votes.
(2) Great Councils shall operate in parallel to the Assembly, which will still be convened under regular order. Participation in Great Councils is determined in the organizing resolution, where the Assembly may expand eligibility beyond legislators or restrict eligibility by criteria it deems fit.
(3) Great Councils may only be called once per year, unless in the intervening time the legitimacy of the Coalition has been challenged and the Assembly must reassert constitutional order.
(4) In calling a Great Council, the Assembly shall pass an organizing resolution by majority vote, naming a chair, determining eligibility requirements, and establishing an agenda and rules of order. Organizing resolutions may be altered by majority vote of the Great Council once convened.
(5) Changes or additions to the constitutional canon of the Coalition may be adopted by a three-fifths majority of the Great Council. Changes or additions to regular statutory law may be adopted by simple majority of the Great Council.
(6) Great Councils shall remain convened until a motion to adjourn sine die is adopted by simple majority.