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The Plenary

1.      On the Plenary

The Plenary of the Assembly is the final decision organ which carries out the legislative, scrutiny and other functions. Government bills and private members’ bills debated in the committees are enacted upon the approval of the Plenary.

The motions on obtaining information and methods of scrutiny, except motions of written questions, are submitted for the information of the Plenary or deliberated in the Plenary.

Furthermore, the decisions taken and the elections held in the Plenary pertain to various matters foreseen in the Constitution, the Rules of Procedure and laws.

2.      First Meeting and Oath Taking

The Plenary convenes without summons at 3 pm on the fifth day following the announcement of the final results of a parliamentary election on Turkish Radio and Television Cooperation channels.

In this sitting, first an oath-taking ceremony is conducted by each deputy. Deputies who are unable to attend the oath-taking ceremony shall take the oath at the beginning of the first sitting in which they participate. Deputies take the oath by reading out the text in the Constitution from the rostrum.

3.      Working Days and Hours of the Plenary

As a general rule, the Assembly sits on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3 pm to 7 pm. However, depending on a proposal of the Board of Spokesmen and a decision of the Plenary, the Assembly may sit during various hours and on various days of the week.

In practice, the Plenary may convene earlier than 3 pm and work later than 7 pm or on the weekends, particularly during budgetary debates.

4.      Agenda of the Plenary

The Plenary performs its activities in accordance with its own agenda. The agenda of the Plenary is printed out and distributed during the days on which the Assembly sits.

The agenda of the Plenary consists of the following parts:

 

1. Presentation of the Office of the Speaker to the Plenary

The various subjects for the information and approval of the Plenary are presented in this part.

These are:

·         Presidential memoranda,

·         Memoranda of the Office of the Speaker,

·         Memoranda of the Prime Ministry,

·         Memoranda of the committee chairmanships,

·         The reports of the Joint Committee in respect of  deferral of parliamentary immunity until the end of the legislative term,

·         Proposals of the Board of Spokespersons and the political party groups,

·         Motions directly put on the agenda,

·         Motions calling for an extraordinary meeting,

·         Other presentations.

2. Special Agenda

The matters that must be concluded in a certain period of time pursuant to the provisions of the Constitution and Rules of Procedure are deliberated within a special agenda. Special agendas and dates of debate are recommended by the Board of Spokesmen and determined by the Plenary.

Those are:

·         Budget and Final Account Bills,

·         Reading, debating and voting on the program of the government,

·          

·         General debate,

·         Debate on the reports of the committees of inquiry,

·         Preliminary debates and debates on motions of censure,

·         Debate on motions of parliamentary investigation and committee reports.

3.  Elections

Elections of the Speaker, the Bureau and committee members, and the election of the members of the Constitutional Court, the Supreme Council of Radio and Television, and the Court of Accounts are held in this section.

4.The Matters to be Voted

Matters which will merely be voted on without any debate fall in this section, for instance, government bills and private members’ bills that are all necessary debates are completed and are ready to be voted on, and a motion for a vote of no-confidence and a request for a vote of confidence.

5. Reports of Parliamentary Investigation

While first debates on opening a parliamentary investigation take place in the special agenda, the report drawn up by the committee is deliberated in this section after establishing committees of investigation.

6. Preliminary Debates Regarding General Debate and Parliamentary Inquiry

A general debate or preliminary debates on the motion of a parliamentary inquiry are dealt with in this section.

7. Oral Questions

Oral questions to the Prime Minister or ministers are included in this section.

8. Government Bills, Private Members’ Bills and Other Business of the Committees

Committee reports on Government Bills and Private Members’ Bills debated by the committees, Joint Committee reports on parliamentary immunity, and other committee reports are dealt with in this section.

In practice, at the commencement of each legislative term, the Plenary takes a decision on dedicating Tuesdays to matters of scrutiny, and Tuesdays and Wednesdays to debates on motions or oral questions for an hour at the beginning of the session. In addition, bills are debated and presentations and elections are conducted on each sitting day, provided that the debate on Wednesdays starts after Question Time.

However, upon a proposal of the Board of Spokespersons or the political party groups, the Plenary may alter the days of debate of this section.

The order of the items in the sections of the agenda is decided according to the sequence of the business in the course of admittance by the Office of the Speaker.

5.      Speeches off the Agenda

In extraordinarily urgent cases considered necessary to be announced to the Plenary, by the discretion of the Speaker or Deputy Speaker, at most three deputies are allowed to speak on matters not on the agenda, not exceeding five minutes before moving to the agenda. Government may respond to each speech that is not on agenda matters for twenty minutes.

Speaking on matters not on the agenda is requested from the Speaker or Vice-Speaker presiding over the sitting of that day.  The Speaker or Vice-Speaker determines the deputies to be given the floor, taking into consideration criteria such as the importance and actuality of the matter and the balance among the political party groups.

In cases when the government requests leave to speak off the agenda in extraordinarily urgent cases, the Speaker chairing the sitting grants the request. After the government’s speech off the agenda for twenty minutes, political party groups are given the floor not exceeding ten minutes. In addition, a deputy who is the member of a political party without a parliamentary group or an independent deputy is permitted to speak for a period not exceeding five minutes.

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