The National Assembly is the sole legislative arm of the government. It currently consists of 147 members. Representation is apportioned according to the population of administrative districts. Election is direct and by party list. The term of office is 5 years. The Assembly meets for two regular sessions each year. It debates and votes on legislation proposed either by one of its members or by the government and has the right to question government ministers about government actions and policies. Eight political parties, aggregated into four parliamentary groups, are represented in the Assembly. ADEMA currently holds the majority; minority parties are represented in all committees and in the Assembly directorate.
Mali's constitution provides for a multi-party democracy, with the only restriction being a prohibition against parties based on ethnic, religious, regional, or gender lines. In addition to those political parties represented in the National Assembly, others are active in municipal councils.
Administratively, Mali is divided into eight regions and the capital district of Bamako, each under the authority of an appointed governor. Each region consists of five to nine districts (or Cercles), administered by commandants. Cercles are divided into communes, which, in turn, are divided into villages or quarters. Plans for decentralization have begun with the establishment of 702 elected municipal councils, headed by elected mayors. Further plans envision election of local officials, greater local control over finances, and the reduction of administrative control by the central government.
Mali's legal system is based on codes inherited at independence from France. New laws have been enacted to make the system conform to Malian life, but French colonial laws not abrogated still have the force of law. The constitution provides for the independence of the judiciary. However, the Ministry of Justice appoints judges and supervises both law enforcement and judicial functions. The Supreme Court has both judicial and administrative powers. Under the constitution, there is a separate constitutional court and a high court of justice with the power to try senior government officials in cases of treason.
conventional long form: Republic of Mali
conventional short form: Mali
local long form: Republique de Mali
local short form: Mali
former: French Sudan and Sudanese Republic
Data code: ML
Government type: republic
Administrative divisions: 8 regions (regions, singular - region); Gao, Kayes, Kidal, Koulikoro, Mopti, Segou, Sikasso, Tombouctou
Independence: 22 September 1960 (from France)
National holiday: Anniversary of the Proclamation of the Republic, 22 September (1960)
Constitution: adopted 12 January 1992
Legal system: based on French civil law system and customary law; judicial review of legislative acts in Constitutional Court (which was formally established on 9 March 1994); has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
Suffrage: 21 years of age; universal
chief of state: President Alpha Oumar KONARE (since 8 June 1992)
head of government: Prime Minister Ibrahim Boubacar KEITA (since March 1994)
cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the prime minister
elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term; election last held 11 May 1997 (next to be held NA May 2002); prime minister appointed by the president
election results: Alpha Oumar KONARE reelected president; percent of vote - Alpha Oumar KONARE 95.9%, Mamadou DIABY 4.1%
unicameral National Assembly or Assemblee Nationale (147 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)
elections: last held 20 July and 3 August 1997 (next to be held in two rounds in 2002); note - much of the opposition boycotted the election
election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - ADEMA 130, PARENA 8, CDS 4, UDD 3, PDP 2
Judicial branch: Supreme Court (Cour Supreme)
Political parties and leaders: Alliance for Democracy or ADEMA [Ibrahim Boubacar KEITA, party chairman]; Block of Alternative for the Renewal of Africa or BARA [Yoro DIAKITE]; Democratic and Social Convention or CDS [Mamadou Bakary SANGARE, chairman]; Movement for the Independence, Renaissance and Integration of Africa or MIRIA [Mohamed Lamine TRAORE, Mouhamedou DICKO]; National Congress for Democratic Initiative or CNID [Mountaga TALL, chairman]; Party for Democracy and Progress or PDP [Me Idrissa TRAORE]; Party for National Renewal or PARENA [Yoro DIAKITE, chairman; Tiebile DRAME, secretary general]; Rally for Democracy and Labor or RDT [Ali GNANGADO]; Rally for Democracy and Progress or RDP [Almamy SYLLA, chairman];
Political pressure groups and leaders: Patriotic Movement of the Ghanda Koye or MPGK; United Movement and Fronts of Azawad or MFUA
International organization participation: ACCT, ACP, AfDB, CCC, ECA, ECOWAS, FAO, FZ, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ITU, MIPONUH, MONUC, NAM, OAU, OIC, OPCW, UN, UN Security Council (temporary), UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WADB, WAEMU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO
Flag description: three equal vertical bands of green (hoist side), yellow, and red; uses the popular pan-African colors of Ethiopia