ARTICLE XV. TRANSITION
This Constitution shall take effect on January 1, 1980, unless otherwise provided herein.
The first election pursuant to the terms of this Constitution shall take place on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November, 1979. The officials elected shall be installed on January 1, 1980.
- All existing law in force and effect in Palau immediately preceding the effective date of this Constitution shall, subject to the provisions of this Constitution, remain in force and effect until repealed, revoked, amended or until it expires by its own terms.
- All rights, interest, obligations, judgments, and liabilities arising under the existing law shall remain in force and effect and shall be recognized, exercised, and enforced accordingly, subject to the provisions of this Constitution.
On or after the effective date of this Constitution, but not later than the termination of the Trusteeship Agreement, the national government of Palau shall succeed to any right or interest acquired by the Administering Authority, the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, and the government of Palau District, and may assume such obligations and liabilities incurred by the Administering Authority, the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, or the government of Palau District as may be prescribed by law.
Nothing in Section 3 or 4 of this Article shall be deemed to constitute a waiver or release of the Administering Authority, the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, or any other government entity or person from any continuing or unsatisfied obligation or duty owing to the citizens of Palau, or the national government or state governments of Palau. The national government and state governments as well as the citizens of Palau shall retain all rights, interests, and causes of action not specifically and expressly released or waived.
All municipal charters existing on the effective date of this Constitution shall remain in force and effect until the state governments are established pursuant to this Constitution which shall take place not later than four (4) years after the effective date of this Constitution.
Upon the effective date of this Constitution, the employees of the district government of Palau shall remain as employees of the national government of Palau, unless otherwise provided by law or regulation.
Until the judicial system provided for in this Constitution is organized, which shall occur not later than one (1) year after the effective date of this Constitution, shall continue unless otherwise provided by law. After the organization and certification of the judicial system by the President, all new additions shall be commenced and filed therein and all pending matters shall be transferred to the proper court as though commenced and filed in those courts in the first instance, except as otherwise prescribed by law. The Chief Justice of the Trust Territory High Court shall be the acting Chief Justice of the Supreme Court until the President appoints the first Chief Justice.
Individuals, corporations, or other entities qualified to do business in Palau on the effective date of this Constitution shall maintain their legal existence and shall be allowed to continue to do business unless otherwise provided by law. Business and professional licenses in Palau District on the effective date of this Constitution shall continue in effect unless otherwise prescribed by law or until they expire by their own terms.
Any provision of this Constitution or a law enacted pursuant to it which is in conflict with the Trusteeship Agreement between the United States of America and the United Nations Security Council shall not become effective until the date of termination of such Trusteeship Agreement.
Any amendment to this Constitution proposed for the purpose of avoiding inconsistency with the Compact of Free Association shall require approval by a majority of the votes cast on that amendment and in not less than three-fourths (3/4) of the states. Such amendment shall remain in effect only as long as the inconsistency continues.
There shall be a Post Convention Committee on Transitional Matters which shall consist of nine members, five of whom shall be appointed by the President of the Palau Constitutional Convention subject to the approval of the Convention, two of whom shall be appointed by the House of Elected Members of the Palau Legislature, and two of whom shall be appointed by the House of Chiefs of the Palau Legislature. The term of office of the members shall commence not later than ten (10) days after the ratification of this Constitution. The Committee shall commence work within ten (10) days following ratification of this Constitution and shall continue until the installation of officers elected pursuant to Section 2 of this Article. The duties and powers of this Committee shall be as follows:
- to aid in the orderly transfer of governmental functions;
- to propose necessary transitional legislation;
- to obtain information necessary to orderly transition;
- to work in cooperation with the Palau Political Status Commission and the Palau Legislature on transitional matters;
- to take all steps reasonable and necessary to promote orderly transition; and
- to seek necessary funds from the Palau Legislature to implement this section and to carry out these tasks.
- The Senate, for the first four-year term after ratification of this Constitution, shall be composed of eighteen (18) senators to be popularly elected as follows:
- the First Senatorial District shall be composed of Kayangel and Ngarchelong and shall have two (2) senators;
- the Second Senatorial District shall be Ngaraard and shall have two (2) senators;
- the Third Senatorial District shall be composed of Ngiwal, Melekeok and Ngchesar and shall have two (2) senators;
- the Fourth Senatorial District shall be Airai and shall have one (1) senator;
- the Fifth Senatorial District shall be composed of Ngardmau, Ngaremlengui, Ngatpang and Aimeliik and shall have two (2) senators;
- the Sixth Senatorial District shall be Koror and shall have seven (7) senators;
- the Seventh Senatorial District shall be Peleliu and shall have one (1) senator;
- The Eighteenth Senatorial District shall be composed of Angaur, Sonsorol and Tobi and shall have one (1) senator;
- The Olbiil Era Kelulau shall promulgate in its first term after the effective date of this Constitution an enabling act designating the duties and the rules governing the composition of the reapportionment commission. The first reapportionment commission shall be constituted within four (4) years of the first general election.