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Constitution of the Empire of Tangatarehua

Promulgated by Her Worship Te Kuia o Whenua, Awhinatia te hunga rawakore on December 9th 1979
Ratified by Te Whare o Tangata on March 8th 1980

Preamble:

It is the will of Te Kuia of Whenua [the Empress], anxious to protect the just rights of Her subjects and secure for them the blessings of liberty throughout her Empire and resolved that never again shall this nation be revisited by the horrors of war, that it is proclaimed that there shall be established this constitution, codifying the relationship between people and government and between the Empress and her subjects, in perpetuity until the end of time.

All previous laws, decrees and constitutions are herewith revoked and replaced by this constitution.

It is the desire of the people of the Empire for peace and freedom and thus we seek to create, maintain and secure it while also acknowledging our traditions, honouring our ancestors and forebears and ensuring that the Mana of the nation is entrenched and never diminished.

Upon this constitution we pledge our national honour.

ARTICLE 1:
The Empress

1. Te Kuia o Whenua [the Empress] is the embodiment of the nation and its spirit, the symbol of the state and the official head of state, who derives her Mana from divine ancestry, tradition and the will of the people.

2. Succession to the Imperial Throne shall be matriarchal and dynastic, in accordance with succession laws. Only members and descendants of the Ngati Puanga dynasty shall be eligible for the Imperial Throne.

3. The Imperial Throne shall be located in the Imperial capital city of Whakaara.

4. The Empress, as the ultimate authority in the land, shall reserve the power to veto legislation or any decree by the Rangatira.

5. The Empress shall be bound by, to and be the guarantor of the terms of this constitution.

6. The Empress shall appoint the Rangatira upon the advice of Te Kahui o Kaitiaki [the Council of Guardians] and possesses the authority to appoint the Mangai o Tangata [Prime Minister] upon the advice of Te Whare o Mangai [the House of Representatives].

7. The Empress may sign legislation into law, superseding the Rangatira or doing so in his absence if necessary.

8. The Empress continues to be ranked first in the order of precedence and at the top of the feudal hierarchy.

9. The Tapu [sacred] status of the Empress is recognised by this constitution.

10. The Empress shall appoint at will the Nui Tohunga and all Tohunga as the official head and embodiment of the state religion Tikanga Wairua.

11. The Empress retains the right to grant ceremonial titles and peerages and to dismiss members of the nobility, including the Rangatira.

12. The Empress may perform the following duties at will or in the absence of the Rangatira:
i. Dissolve and establish Parliament
ii. Appoint or dismiss Ministers of State
iii. Receive foreign ambassadors or ministers
iiii. Commute punishment or provide special amnesty and restoration of rights
v. Perform ceremonial functions

ARTICLE 2:
The Rangatira

1. Executive power shall be vested in the Rangatira

2. The Rangatira may, within the confines of the constitution and the law, pass decrees and/or executive orders.

3. The Rangatira shall retain sole responsibility for organising the foreign policy and defence of the Empire.

4. The Rangatira possesses the authority to veto or sign legislation into law, provided he does not infringe upon the rights established within this constitution.

5. The Rangatira may appoint Ministers of State including Te Mangai o Tangata, however he must do so only with the consent of Te Whare o Mangai [the House of Representatives].

6. The Rangatira may convene or dissolve Te Kahui o Katiaki at will.

7. The Rangatira, with consent from the Empress, may select, appoint or dismiss Kaitiaki or members of the Toa class.

8. The Rangatira shall serve for a life term, unless dismissed by the Empress or choosing to abdicate.

9. The Rangatira shall be elected by Te Kahui o Kaitiaki, with only a Kaitiaki eligible to become Rangatira. The Rangatira must be appointed and confirmed by the Empress.

10. Only the Rangatira may sign and negotiate treaties with foreign nations. In some circumstances ratification by Parliament may be required.

11. The Rangatira is the head of the Department of State which includes the Civil Service as well as the Foreign Office.

ARTICLE 3:
Rights and responsibilities of the people

1. The rights of citizenship shall be conferred by law

2. The rights of citizens are guaranteed by this constitution

3. The freedoms and rights of the people shall be abused neither by the government nor by the people in order to ensure and maintain public welfare.

4. All individuals have the right to life, liberty and happiness provided that this does not interfere with public welfare. Upholding these rights must be the principal consideration of all legislation and decrees.

5. Whilst we seek to honour the traditions and ways of our ancestors, aspects of the feudal hierarchy are herewith amended to ensure that discrimination on the basis of class or caste is prohibited. All people shall be equal before the law.

6. The following are designated inalienable rights:
i. Freedom of speech
ii. Freedom of religion
iii. Freedom of thought
iiii. Freedom of conscience
v. Freedom of association
vi. Freedom of movement
vii. Academic, media, press and political freedom
viii. Freedom from non-consensual marriage
ix. Freedom from slavery
x. The right to education, healthcare and public welfare

7. Citizens aged 21 or over have the right to elect Mangai [Representatives] to Te Whare o Mangai by secret ballot. Citizens may also stand for election or stand for election to an office of Hapu Whenua.

8. Citizens have the right to form or join political parties of any ideology provided that such political parties are not unconstitutional in nature. Fascism and fascist political parties are herewith outlawed, as are parties deemed 'extremist'.

9. Discrimination on the basis of gender or race is prohibited.

10. The right to own property is guaranteed

11. The right to a speedy, open trial by jury is guaranteed. Unlawful search or seizure is prohibited as is forced confession and prolonged arrest.

12. Torture, cruel and unusual punishment and the practice of ritual cannibalism (kaitangata) is herewith prohibited.

13. No citizen shall be held criminally liable for an act that was lawful at the time it was committed, or of which they were acquitted and nor shall they be placed in double jeopardy.

14. Citizens have the right to sue the state for redress in the event of wrongful conviction, detainment, arrest or otherwise abuse of human rights or illegal act by government officials.

ARTICLE 4:
Renunciation of War

1. Aspiring to an international peace based on justice and order, the Empire of Tangatarehua forever renounces the right to declare war or use the threat of force as a means to settle international disputes. The right of the belligerency of the state shall not be recognised and the Imperial Army, Imperial Navy and Imperial Air Force shall be disbanded and never be maintained.

2. The Empire of Tangatarehua renounces, in perpetuity, the right to possess, develop or maintain nuclear weapons. It shall be the official position of the Empire that weapons of mass destruction and nuclear weapons should be banned internationally.

3. Nuclear weapons shall be banned from the land and from the territorial waters.

4. The Empire is permitted to maintain a small self-defence force, commanded by the Rangatira, for strictly defensive purposes only.

ARTICLE 5:
Parliament

1. Legislative power shall be invested in Te Whare o Tangata [Parliament].

2. Te Whare o Tangata shall consist of two houses, Te Kahui o Kaitiaki [the Council of Guardians] and Te Whare o Mangai [the House of Representatives].

3. Te Whare o Mangai shall consist of elected members, representative of the people.

4. All citizens aged 21 and over who are of Toa class or below are qualified for membership of Te Whare o Mangai and there shall be no discrimination on the basis of sex, race, creed, social status, education, property or income. Anyone of Kaitiaki class or higher is not eligible for office. Discrimination on the basis of class, notwithstanding the aforementioned, is prohibited.

5. Membership of Te Kahui o Kaitiaki is restricted only to the 21 Iwi Kaitiaki [Regional Guardians]. Kaitiaki are selected for a life term, unless otherwise dismissed by either the Rangatira or Empress.

6. The term of office for Te Whare o Mangai shall be three years. The House of Representatives must dissolve no later than three weeks prior to the third anniversary of the previous election. The Mangai o Tangata [Prime Minister] may request an earlier dissolution of Parliament or an earlier election date, but may not extend the term of Parliament beyond three years under any circumstances.

7. The number of seats in the House of Representatives shall be fixed approximately to one seat for every one million citizens. Two thirds of the seats will be for single-member constituencies while the remaining third will be delegated proportionally to any political party that achieves more than 5% of the total ballots cast according to the party list system prescribed by law.

8. No person may be a member of both houses simultaneously. The Rangatira and members of the Imperial Family may not become members of Parliament.

9. Members of both houses shall have Parliamentary privilege and cannot be held legally liable for statements, speeches, votes cast or debates held within Parliament.

10. The first duty of the House of Representatives shall be to elect the Mangai o Tangata [Prime Minister] who shall preside over the legislature as well as the Department of the Treasury.

11. The Prime Minister is recognised as head of the legislature and the treasury, but is not the head of government or to hold any significant executive power beyond their position as head of the treasury and legislature.

12. Members of both houses must appear when their presence is required and are permitted to appear in Parliament at any time.

13. Extraordinary sessions of Parliament may be convened in times of national emergency, but only with express approval from the Empress.

14. In the event of a conflict between the two houses, the House of Representatives may override a decision taken by the Council of Guardians with a 75% supermajority vote. This excludes conflicts over the budget in which case the House of Representatives requires only a simple majority.

15. The House of Representatives shall, in extraordinary cases of gross misconduct by a member or government official, have the power of impeachment. If an individual is impeached by the House of Representatives they will then go to trial by the Council of Guardians, who will hold the power to convict or acquit an impeached individual.

ARTICLE 6:
The Judiciary

1. Judicial power is invested in the Supreme Court and inferior courts established by law.

2. Recognising the special status of Tikanga Wairua, the traditions of the nation and the moral guidance provided by the state religion, the Nui Tohunga shall concurrently serve as the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.

3. Supreme Court judges must be of the Tohunga class, however lower courts permit the establishment of Kaumatua or particularly learned Kaihu class as judges. Judges shall be appointed by the Empress, on the advice of Parliament.

4. Judges may be removed from office via impeachment, as set out in Article 5. In extraordinary cases they may also be removed if they lose the confidence of Her Worship the Empress.

5. This constitution recognises the position of customary and religious law, however statutes by Parliament will always take precedence over customary law.

6. Trials shall be conducted and judgment declared publicly. Where a court unanimously determines publicity to be dangerous to public order or that it may impede the defendant's right to a fair trial, a trial may be conducted privately. Any trial related to corruption, human rights or conduct of a government or noble official must be held publicly in all circumstances.

ARTICLE 7:
Finance

1. The power to administer national finances rests solely with Parliament. The Prime Minister shall head the Department of the Treasury.

2. No taxation or expenditure is permitted without authorisation by Parliament or the Prime Minister.

3. The Prime Minister shall present a budget to Parliament each fiscal year for consideration and decision. If a Prime Minister is unable to gain support from the House of Representatives to pass a budget they shall be deemed to have lost confidence of the House and thus a new Prime Minister must be elected or else Parliament must be dissolved.

4. In the case of unforeseen emergencies or deficiencies in the budget, a reserve fund may be used for expenditure but only with approval from the Parliament as well as the Empress.

5. All property of Ngati Puanga [the Imperial Household] shall be property of the state. All expenses of Ngati Puanga shall be appropriated for by Parliament.

6. The Department of Treasury is required by law to transparent with the public on all matter of public expenditure, and the Prime Minister is expected to report regularly on the state of public finances.

ARTICLE 8:
Religion

1. Tikanga Wairua is recognised as the official state religion. The Empress shall be its symbolic head while the Nui Tohunga shall be its chief governor.

2. Tikanga Wairua shall function as if a corporate entity wholly owned by the state.

3. The Nui Tohunga, in addition to their judicial roles, are also required to perform ceremonial roles especially during the coronation of a new Empress.

4. In the event of the death or abdication of an Empress, Tikanga Wairua shall become temporary custodians of the Whetu Tapu Taonga [Seven Sacred Treasures].

5. All citizens of Tangatarehua have freedom of religion as per Article 3 and Tikanga Wairua and its beliefs may not be forced upon any man, woman or child without consent.

ARTICLE 9:
Amendments

1. Amendments to this constitution may be initiated by Te Whare o Tangata with a 75% supermajority in both houses and with the consent of the Empress.

2. The Rangatira may not promulgate, campaign for or ratify constitutional amendments.

3. Amendments to the constitution may be initiated by the Empress but require ratification by a 75% supermajority of Te Whare o Tangata.

5. If a 75% supermajority cannot be obtained then ratification may be obtained through a majority via nationwide referendum.

ARTICLE 10:
Supreme Law

1. This constitution shall be supreme law of the land, and no ordnance, law, religious proclamation, decree or statute contrary to its provisions shall have legal force or validity.

2. The Empress, Rangatira, Prime Minister, Kaitiaki, Representatives of Parliament, government officials and nobility have an obligation to respect and uphold this constutition.

3. The hierarchy of law in Tangatarehua shall be as follows:

i. Supreme Law [This constitution]
ii. Statutory law [Passed by Parliament]
iii. Extraordinary decrees by the Empress
iiii. Decrees by the Rangatira
v. Customary law [of Tikanga Wairua]

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