CONSTITUTION

Chapter One: Fundamental Principles

Chapter Two: Fundamental Rights and Obligations of Citizens

Chapter Three: National Assembly

Chapter Four: President of the Republic

Chapter Five: Council of Ministers

Chapter Six: Judicial Power

Chapter Seven: Local Self-Government and Local Administration

Chapter Eight: Constitutional Court

Chapter Nine: Amendments to the Constitution. Adoption of a New Constitution

Chapter Ten: Coat of Arms, Seal, Flag, Anthem, Capital

Transitional and Concluding Provisions



Chapter Four

President of the Republic


Article 92.

    (1) The President shall be the head of state. He shall embody the unity of the nation and shall represent the state in its international relations.
    (2) The President shall be assisted in his actions by a Vice President.

Article 93.

    (1) The President shall be elected directly by the voters for a period of five years by a procedure established by a law.
    (2) Eligible for President shall be any natural-born Bulgarian citizen over 40 years of age and qualified to be elected to the National Assembly, who has resided in the country for the five years preceding the election. (3) To be elected, a candidate shall require more than one-half of the valid ballots, provided that more than half of all eligible voters have cast their ballots in the election.
    (4) Should none of the candidates for President be elected, a runoff vote shall be held within seven days between the two top candidates. The winner shall be the candidate who wins the majority of the vote.
    (5) A presidential election shall be held not earlier than three months and not later than two months before the expiry of the term of office of the incumbent President.
    (6) The Constitutional Court shall rule upon any challenge to the legality of a presidential election within a month's time after the election.

Article 94. The Vice President shall be elected at the same time and on the same ticket as the President, on the same conditions and by the same procedure.

Article 95.

    (1) The President and the Vice President shall be eligible for only one re-election to the same office.
    (2) The President and the Vice President shall not serve as Members of the National Assembly or engage in any other state, public or economic activity, nor shall they participate in the leadership of any political party.

Article 96. The President and the Vice President shall swear before the National Assembly the oath established by Article 76 para 2.

Article 97.

    (1) The President's or Vice President's authority shall expire before the expiry of his term of office upon any of the following occurrences: 1. resignation submitted before the Constitutional Court;
    2. lasting incapacitation caused by a grave illness; 3. in pursuant to Article 103. 4. death;
    (2) In instances 1 and 2, the prerogatives of the President or Vice President shall be suspended upon the Constitutional Court's establishing the existence of the respective circumstances;
    (3) In instance 1, the Vice President shall assume the duties of the President until the expiry of the term of office.
    (4) Should the Vice President be incapable of assuming the President s duties, the President's prerogatives shall be assumed by the Chairman of the National Assembly until the election of a new President and Vice President. Elections for President and Vice President shall then be held within two months.

Article 98. The President of the Republic shall: 1. schedule the elections for a National Assembly and for the bodies of local self-government and shall set the date for national referendums pursuant to a resolution of the National Assembly; 2. address the nation and the National Assembly; 3. conclude international treaties in the circumstances established by the law; 4. promulgate the laws; 5. on a motion from the Council of Ministers, determine the borders of the administrative territorial units and their centers; 6. on a motion from the Council of Ministers, appoint and dismiss the heads of the Republic of Bulgaria's diplomatic and permanent missions at international organizations, and receive the credentials and the letters of recall of the foreign diplomatic representatives to this country; 7. appoint and dismiss from office other state officials, established by a law; 8. award orders and medals; 9. grant, restore, relieve from and withdraw Bulgarian citizenship; 10. grant asylum; 11. exercise the right to pardon; 12. cancel uncollectible debts to the state; 13. name landmarks and communities of national importance; 14. inform the National Assembly on basic problems within his prerogatives.

Article 99.

    (1) Following consultations with the parliamentary groups, the President shall appoint the Prime Minister-designate nominated by the party holding the highest number of seats in the National Assembly to form a government.
    (2) Should the Prime Minister-designate fail to form a government within seven days, the President shall entrust this task to a Prime Minister-designate nominated by the second largest parliamentary group.
    (3) Should the new Prime Minister-designate also fail to form a government within the period established by the preceding paragraph, the President shall entrust the task to a Prime Minister-designate nominated by one of the minor parliamentary groups.
    (4) Should the consultations prove successful, the President shall ask the National Assembly to elect the Prime Minister-designate.
    (5) Absent an agreement on the formation of a government, the President shall appoint a caretaker government, dissolve the National Assembly and schedule new elections within the period established by Article 64 para 3. The President's act on the dissolution of the National Assembly shall also establish the date of the new general elections.
    (6) The procedure for forming a government established by the preceding paragraphs shall further apply in the instances envisaged by Article 111 para 1.
    (7) In the instances envisaged by para 5 and 6, the President shall not dissolve the National Assembly during the last three months of his term of office. Should Parliament fail to form a government within the established period, the President shall appoint a caretaker government.

Article 100.

    (1) The President shall be the Supreme Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Bulgaria.
    (2) The President shall appoint and dismiss the higher command of the Armed Forces and shall bestow all higher military ranks on a motion from the Council of Ministers.
    (3) The President shall preside over the Consultative National Security Council, the status of which shall be established by a law.
    (4) The President shall proclaim general or partial mobilization on a motion from the Council of Ministers in accordance with the law.
    (5) The President shall proclaim a state of war in the case of an armed attack against Bulgaria or whenever urgent actions are required by virtue of an international commitment, or shall proclaim martial law or any other state of emergency whenever the National Assembly is not in session and cannot be convened. The National Assembly shall then be convened forthwith to endorse the decision.

Article 101.

    (1) Within the term established by Article 88 para 3, the President shall be free to return a bill together with his motives to the National Assembly for further debate, which shall not be denied.
    (2) The new passage of such a bill shall require a majority of more than half of all Members of the National Assembly.
    (3) Following a new passage of the bill by the National Assembly, the President shall promulgate it within seven days following its receipt.

Article 102.

    (1) Within the prerogatives vested in him, the President shall issue decrees, addresses and messages.
    (2) The President's decrees shall be countersigned by the Prime Minister or the minister concerned.
    (3) No countersigning shall be required for decrees pertaining to: 1. the appointment of a caretaker government; 2. the appointment of a Prime Minister-designate; 3. dissolution of the National Assembly; 4. return of a bill to the National Assembly for further debate; 5. the organization and manner of action of the offices of the Presidency and the appointment of their staff; 6. the scheduling of an election or referendum; 7. the promulgation of a law.

Article 103.

    (1) The President and Vice President shall not be held liable for actions committed in the performance of their duties, except for high treason, or a violation of the Constitution.
    (2) An impeachment shall require a motion from no fewer than one-fourth of all Members of the National Assembly and shall stand if supported by more than two-thirds of the Members.
    (3) An impeachment against the President or Vice President shall be tried by the Constitutional Court within a month following the lodging of the impeachment. Should the Constitutional Court convict the President or Vice President of high treason, or of a violation of the Constitution, the President's or Vice President's prerogatives shall be suspended.
    (4) No one shall place the President or the Vice President under detention, nor shall initiate criminal proceedings against them.

Article 104. The President shall be free to devolve to the Vice President the prerogatives established by Article 98 subparas 7, 9, 10 and 11.


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