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Jurisdiction and Access

Botswana, English

(1) Where any question as to the interpretation of this Constitution arises in any proceedings in any subordinate court and the court is of the opinion that the question involves a substantial question of law, the court may, and shall, if any party to the proceedings so requests, refer the question to the High Court.
(2) Where any question is referred to the High Court in pursuance of this section, the High Court shall give its decision upon the question and the court in which the question arose shall, subject to any appeal, dispose of the case in accordance with that decision. (Sec. 105)

Jurisdiction and Access

Botswana, English

An appeal shall lie as of right to the Court of Appeal from any decision of the High Court which involves the interpretation of this Constitution, other than a decision of the High Court under section 69(1) of this Constitution:
Provided that no appeal shall lie from a determination of the High Court under this section dismissing an application on the ground that it is frivolous or vexatious. (Sec. 106)

Limitations and/or Derogations

Botswana, English

(1) Nothing contained in or done under the authority of any law shall be held to be inconsistent with or in contravention of section 5 or 15 of this Constitution to the extent that the law authorizes the taking during any period when Botswana is at war or any period when a declaration under section 17 of this Constitution is in force, of measures that are reasonably justifiable for the purpose of dealing with the situation that exists during that period.
… (Sec. 16)

Limitations and/or Derogations

Botswana, English

Whereas every person in Botswana is entitled to the fundamental rights and freedoms of the individual, that is to say, the right, whatever his or her race, place of origin, political opinions, colour, creed or sex, but subject to respect for the rights and freedoms of others and for the public interest to each and all of the following, namely-
(a) life, liberty, security of the person and the protection of the law;
(b) freedom of conscience, of expression and of assembly and association; and
(c) protection for the privacy of his or her home and other property and from deprivation of property without compensation,
the provisions of this Chapter shall have effect for the purpose of affording protection to those rights and freedoms subject to such limitations of that protection as are contained in those provisions, being limitations designed to ensure that the enjoyment of the said rights and freedoms by any individual does not prejudice the rights and freedoms of others or the public interest. (Sec. 3)

Obligations of the State

Botswana, English

Whereas every person in Botswana is entitled to the fundamental rights and freedoms of the individual, that is to say, the right, whatever his or her race, place of origin, political opinions, colour, creed or sex, but subject to respect for the rights and freedoms of others and for the public interest to each and all of the following, namely-
(a) life, liberty, security of the person and the protection of the law;
(b) freedom of conscience, of expression and of assembly and association; and
(c) protection for the privacy of his or her home and other property and from deprivation of property without compensation,
the provisions of this Chapter shall have effect for the purpose of affording protection to those rights and freedoms subject to such limitations of that protection as are contained in those provisions, being limitations designed to ensure that the enjoyment of the said rights and freedoms by any individual does not prejudice the rights and freedoms of others or the public interest. (Sec. 3)

Judicial Protection

Botswana, English

(1) Subject to the provisions of subsection (5) of this section, if any person alleges that any of the provisions of sections 3 to 16 (inclusive) of this Constitution has been, is being or is likely to be contravened in relation to him or her, then, without prejudice to any other action with respect to the same matter which is lawfully available, that person may apply to the High Court for redress.
(2) The High Court shall have original jurisdiction-
(a) to hear and determine any application made by any person in pursuance of subsection (1) of this section; or
(b) to determine any question arising in the case of any person which is referred to it in pursuance of subsection (3) of this section, and may make such orders, issue such writs and give such direction as it may consider appropriate for the purpose of enforcing or securing the enforcement of any of the provisions of sections 3 to 16 (inclusive) of this Constitution.
(3) If in any proceedings in any subordinate court any question arises as to the contravention of any of the provisions of sections 3 to 16 (inclusive) of this Constitution, the person presiding in that court may, and shall if any party to the proceedings so requests, refer the question to the High Court unless, in his or her opinion, the raising of the question is merely frivolous or vexatious.
(4) Parliament may confer upon the High Court such powers in addition to those conferred by this section as may appear to be necessary or desirable for the purpose of enabling that court more effectively to exercise the jurisdiction conferred upon it by this section.
… (Sec. 18)

Obligations of Private Parties

Botswana, English

Whereas every person in Botswana is entitled to the fundamental rights and freedoms of the individual, that is to say, the right, whatever his or her race, place of origin, political opinions, colour, creed or sex, but subject to respect for the rights and freedoms of others and for the public interest to each and all of the following, namely-
(a) life, liberty, security of the person and the protection of the law;
(b) freedom of conscience, of expression and of assembly and association; and
(c) protection for the privacy of his or her home and other property and from deprivation of property without compensation,
the provisions of this Chapter shall have effect for the purpose of affording protection to those rights and freedoms subject to such limitations of that protection as are contained in those provisions, being limitations designed to ensure that the enjoyment of the said rights and freedoms by any individual does not prejudice the rights and freedoms of others or the public interest. (Sec. 3)

Government

Botswana, English

(1) There shall be a Cabinet which shall consist of the President, Vice-President and the Ministers.
… (Sec. 44)

Political Rights and Association

Botswana, English

(1) A person who-
(a) is a citizen of Botswana or of any other country to which this section is applied by Parliament;
(b) has attained the age of 18 years; and
(c) has either resided in Botswana for a continuous period of at least 12 months immediately preceding the date on which he or she applies for registration as a voter or was born in Botswana and is domiciled in Botswana on the date on which he or she applies for registration as a voter, shall, unless he or she is disqualified for registration as a voter under any law, be entitled, upon his or her making application in that behalf at such time and in such manner as may be prescribed by any law, to be registered as a voter for the purposes of elections of Elected Members of the National Assembly, and no other person may be so registered.
… (Sec. 67)

Head of State

Botswana, English

There shall be a President of the Republic of Botswana who shall be the Head of State. (Sec. 30)