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Dr.Alsarghali Gives a talk about the Constitutional Building Process at the Australian Parliament

  • July 31, 2019

    The talk entitled: Constitutional Building Process in Palestine will focused on the relatively un-seen constitutional moment that Palestine is having. 

    The Palestinian constitutional framework has not been in the spotlight for many years as, in the face of political instability and the issue of occupation, it has not been considered a pressing concern. However, for a country undergoing a double transition like Palestine, a transition to democracy and a transition to statehood, having a solid constitution is of a huge importance. Indeed, whilst a constitution may not build a school or educate a child it does guarantee certain rights, like gender equality and education, which are pressing and crucial issues requiring an immediate response. 

    Despite the power of the constitutional document to give traction to, and bring into being, basic laws and rights, there is a danger that a constitution may be drafted for purely symbolic reasons; used only to indicate the sovereignty of the state without focusing on making it the supreme law that protects citizens and constrains power. Part of my advocacy work in Palestine is to ensure that its newly drafted constitution becomes more than a symbolic exercise.

    In her talk  Dr.Alsarghali  focused  on the awareness campaign -which the centre  is part  of- to ensure Palestinians, regardless of their age and gender, are aware of their rights, duties and how they could be true owners of their constitutional document.

    The talk addressed what have been achieved so far. Through the Constitutional Studies Centre at An-najah university and the NGOs ‘Women Media and Development’ (TAM) and Miftah, the success was by establishing key constitutional principles for the future constitutional document. Perhaps the biggest achievement of the campaign   -so far- is to have included in the constitution the notion of ‘founding mothers’, as well as ‘founding fathers’. This is part of a wider project to ensure the future Palestinian constitution is engendered i.e. gender sensitive, recognising the equal status of both men and women.