Legislative Council of Brunei

Legislative Council of Brunei
Majlis Mesyuarat Negara Brunei
مجليس مشوارت نڬارا بروني
Coat of arms or logo
Houses Monarchy, Non-partisan
Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Abdul Rahman bin Dato Setia Haji Mohamed Taib, Non-partisan
Seats 32 full members
Political groups
Committees None
Meeting place
Legislative Council Building,
Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei
Legislative Council of Brunei
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The Legislative Council of Brunei (Malay: Majlis Mesyuarat Negara Brunei (مجليس مشوارت نڬارا بروني)) is one of the Councils of Brunei Darussalam, facilitated by the Department of Councils of State, based on the House of Commons United Kingdom. It was established in accordance with Chapter 23 of the Brunei Constitution 1959 and its members appointed in accordance with Chapter 24.

The Legislative Council of Brunei is chaired by the Speaker of the Legislative Council who is appointed by the Sultan, Hassanal Bolkiah, in accordance with Chapter 37 of the Constitution, and either chosen from the Council Members or those who are not members of the Council.

The main functions of the Legislative Council are as follows:

  1. To pass and impose amendments of laws;
  2. To approve Government budgets and to impose financial restrictions;
  3. To discuss and approve motions (proposals);
  4. To examine the Government policies and other matters related to Legislatures.

The Legislative Council Session is held annually in March to discuss and approve the annual budget and revenue estimates.

Brief History

Since 21 October 1959 until 12 February 1984, the Legislative Council held a total of 32 Meetings. The first Meeting of the Legislative Council was convened on 21 October 1959 at Lapau. The last Meeting of the Legislative Council was the 21st Meeting (Budget), before the State of Brunei achieved its full independence held at the Dewan Majlis, Bandar Seri Begawan. Every member shall hold his seat for 5 years in accordance with Chapter 55 (2) of the Brunei Constitution 1959.

On 13 February 1984, the Council of State was dissolved by His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam. The Legislative Council was reinstated under the old system on 25 September 2004. The council was dissolved on 1 September 2005 and was reinstated again on 2 September 2005 in accordance with the new provision of the Brunei Constitution (amendment) 2005.

The management of the Legislative Council is facilitated and organised by the Clerk to the Legislative Council to assist and advise the Speaker of the Legislative Council in regards to managing the Meetings with respect to the rules of the meeting. The Clerk and the Deputy Clerk carry the same role to the Members of the Legislative Council. The preparation and management of the Legislative Council is fully supported by all Officers and staffs of the Department of Councils of State.

The Meeting is open to public where people can see the Legislative Council in session and observe the ways of the meeting carried out.

Developments in the field of administration and constitution during the period of the appointment of Members have been helpful in maintaining and sustaining the nation’s goals towards prosperity and improving the quality of lives of the citizens and residents of Brunei Darussalam. During this period, it is proven that the experience of democracy through elections does not necessarily guarantee the integrity and stability of the country. In fact it can be concluded that the legal field since 1970 is able to carry out its responsibility in moving towards political and socio-economic stability.

Legislative procedures and practice

The main function of the Legislative Council is as an advisor to the Government by examining Government policies and implementations, for example drafting of laws, approving Government budgets and revenue collection per year for the nation's development plan, as well as tax assessments.

In contrast to the Cabinet Ministers Council, the Legislative Council allows each member to submit any bill or recommend any motion for debate. However the bill to be debated or approved shall require the prior approval from the Cabinet Ministers Council. With the exception to certain circumstances, every bill to be submitted during the Meeting must be published in the Government Gazette for public knowledge for a period of at least fourteen days. Similarly, a person who wishes to submit questionnaire orally or in writing is required to send the questions seven days prior to the question submitted to the Clerk to the Legislative Council in order for the questions to be included in the paperwork. This method also allows the Government to make preparations. If one is not satisfied with the response given by the Government, with the permission of the Speaker of the House (the Legislative Council), he is allowed to propose a question that is relatable to the original question.

The Meeting of the Legislative Council is conducted based on the same system used by the Legislative Council or parliament in the Commonwealth countries, as it is created based on the House of Commons, in the United Kingdom. A bill must go through the four stages, namely the First Reading, Second Reading, Committee stage and the Third Reading. The First Reading is to follow the terms which is to inform the Council and the Member of the House who brought the bill to seek permission from the Speaker for the First Reading, after which members may be able to seek permission again to the Speaker for the Second Reading and during which members will explain the reasons for the bill submitted. The bill will only be discussed after obtaining the support of at least one of the Members of the Council. At this stage, the discussion is focused on the necessity and feasibility of the bill and its implication towards the nation. After that, the election stage will take place if approval for Second Reading is obtained. Thus all Council Members would be the Committee to then all members of the Board would make themselves the Committee to consider and discuss every each of the bills.

At this stage, the bill shall be determined by the Members of the Council whether they endorse, reject or make other amendments. After the Committee finished considering and discussing the bill, the Member who submitted the bill would seek to the Speaker for the Third Reading before voting. When the voting results are supported by the Council Members, the bill is approved. However the bill would only become law and take effect when signed by the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam.

In the matter of approving the bill, the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam provided by the Constitution to be allowed to reject a bill passed by the Legislative Council, and vice versa. Although the bill was rejected by the Council, if required by the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam, it can become law. All bills that are approved or rejected by the His Majesty Sultan will be published in the Government Gazette.

Structure of the Legislative Council

Currently, there are 32 members in the Legislative Council:

1. The Prime Minister of Brunei; Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah, the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam;

2. The Senior Minister; Al-Muhtadee Billah, the Crown Prince of Brunei Darussalam

3. The Cabinet Ministers;

4. Appointed Titled Persons;

5. Appointed Distinction Achiever Members;

6. Representatives from Brunei’s four (4) Districts


  1. His Majesty Sultan Hj. Hassanal Bolkiah;
    Yang di-Pertuan Negara, Prime Minister, First Minister of Finance and Minister of Defence, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade
  2. His Royal Highness Crown Prince Hj. Al-Muhtadee Billah
    Senior Minister in the Prime Minister's Office
  3. The Hon. Pehin Dato Hj. Suyoi bin Hj. Osman
    Minister of Education
  4. The Hon. Pehin Dato Hj. Zulkarnain bin Hj. Hanafi
    Minister of Health
  5. The Hon. Pehin Dato Hj. Bahrin bin Hj. Abdullah
    Minister of Development
  6. The Hon. Pehin Dato Hj. Awang Mustafa bin Hj. Sirat
    Minister of Communications
  7. The Hon. Pehin Dato Hj. Ali bin Hj. Apong
    Minister of Industry and Primary Resources
  8. The Hon. Pehin Dato Hj. Abdul Rahman bin Hj. Ibrahim
    Second Minister of Finance
  9. The Hon. Pehin Dato Lim Jock Seng
    Second Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade
  10. The Hon. Pehin Col. Rtd. Dato Dr. Hj. Mohammad Yasmin bin Hj. Umar
    Minister of Energy in Prime Minister's Department
  11. The Hon. Pehin Udana Khatib Dato Paduka Seri Setia Ustaz Hj. Awang Badaruddin bin Hj. Awang Osman
    Minister of Religious Affairs
  12. The Hon. Pehin Dato Dr. Hj. Awang Abu Bakar bin Hj. Apong
    Minister of Home Affairs
  13. The Hon. Pehin Dato Hj. Halbi bin Hj. Muhammad Yusuf
    Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports
  14. The Rt. Hon. Pengiran Dr. Hj. Mohd. Yusuf bin Pengiran Abdul Rahim
    Distinguished Bruneian
  15. The Hon. Dato Imam Hj. Awang Abdul Hamid bin Bakal
    Distinguished Bruneian
  16. The Hon. Dato Hj. Yaakub bin Pehin Dato Hj. Zainal
    Distinguished Bruneian
  17. The Hon. Dato Goh King Chin
    Outstanding Bruneian (Uncle of Wu Chun)
  18. The Hon. Hj. Othman bin Uking
    Outstanding Bruneian
  19. The Hon. Datin Salbiah binti Haji Sulaiman
    Outstanding Bruneian
  20. The Hon. Dato Hj. Abdullah bin Dato Hj. Mohd. Jaafar
    Outstanding Bruneian
  21. The Hon. Hj. Ahmad Morsidi bin Pehin Hj. Awang Abdul Rahman
    Outstanding Bruneian
  22. The Hon. Hj. Zulkipli bin Hj. Abdul Hamid
    Outstanding Bruneian
  23. The Hon. Datin Hjh. Zasia binti Sirin
    Outstanding Bruneian
  24. The Hon. Hj. A. Ahmad bin Husain
    Headman of Mukim Berakas A, Brunei-Muara
  25. The Hon. Hj. Gapor bin Karim
    Head of Belimbing, Kota Batu, Brunei-Muara
  26. The Hon. Hj. Tahamit bin Hj. Nudin
    Headman of Mukim Gadong A, Brunei-Muara
  27. The Hon. Hj. Jumat bin Akim
    Head of Putat, Mukim Lumapas, Brunei-Muara
  28. The Hon. Hj. Mohd. Shafiee bin Ahmad
    Head of Lumut , Liang, Belait
  29. The Hon. Hj. Mohd. Yusof bin Dulamin
    Head of Mumong, Kuala Belait, Belait
  30. The Hon. Dato Hj. Muhammad Taha bin Abdul Rauf
    Headman of Mukim Keriam, Tutong
  31. The Hon. Hj. Ramli bin Hj. Lahit
    Headman of Mukim Telisai, Tutong
  32. The Hon. Hj. Sulaiman bin Hj. Ahad
    Head of Belingos, Bangar, Temburong

Ex officio

  1. The Hon. Hj. Abdul Rahman bin Hj. Mohamed Taib
  2. The Hon. Hj. Judin bin Hj. Asar
    Clerk I (First) to the Legislative Council

International and regional meetings

The Legislative Council of Brunei is also active in attending and participating in meetings and conferences at international and regional levels as follows:

  1. Asean Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA)
  2. AIPA Fact-Finding Committee (AIFOCOM) to Combat Drug Menace
  4. Asia-Pacific Parliamentary Forum (APPF)
  5. Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA)
  6. Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) [1]
  7. Global Conference of Parliamentarians Against Corruption (GOPAC) [2]

Brunei was a special observer of AIPA since 1993. In 2009. Brunei Darussalam became a full member of AIPA at the 30th AIPA General Assembly in Pattaya, Thailand. In 2013, Brunei Darussalam hosted the 34th AIPA General Assembly. Among the issues discussed during the AIPA assemblies include Political, Economic, Social and issues related to women regionally and internationally.

Seat and building

The parliament is situated in the neoclassicist "Dewan Majilis Baru". The government complex was completed in 2007 in the capital Bandar Seri Begawan.[3]

See also


  1. Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU)
  2. Global Conference of Parliamentarians Against Corruption (GOPAC)
  3. "Brunei". places-of-power.org A Wiki on National Parliament Buildings Worldwide. Retrieved 2016-01-06.
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Coordinates: 4°54′47″N 114°56′55″E / 4.913159°N 114.948497°E / 4.913159; 114.948497

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