The Constitution of the Republic of Kazakhstan is the main law of the country. The first Constitution was adopted on January 28, 1993. It was of certain historical importance in the making of a young sovereign state. The new Constitution was adopted on August 30, 1995 by the all-nation referendum. In 1998 on the President’s initiative Parliament made; about 20 additions and amendments to the Constitution. These amendments widened Parliament powers and democratic bases of public life.
According to the Constitution, the Republic of Kazakhstan is a unitary state with a presidential form of government. The head of the state is the President. The President has wide powers. He forms government, appoints a Prime Minister with the Parliament’s consent and releases him from office. The President is the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Republic. The first President of the country, N. A. Nazarbayev was elected in 1991. The President in accordance with the Constitution is elected for a five-year term.
But this term is prolonged to seven years under the amendments to the Constitution of 1998. In 1999 extraordinary elections of the President took place and N. A. Nazarbayev won them. On June 27, 2000 at a joint session of the Parliament’s Chambers there was adopted the Constitutional law of (he Republic of Kazakhstan «On the first President of the Republic of Kazakhstan», which fixed life status of the Republic’s leader.
The highest representative body performing legislative functions is Parliament of the Republic of Kazakhstan. Parliament consists of two structures: upper chamber — the Senate and lower chamber — the Majilis. The Senate is composed of deputies elected in twos from each oblast, major city and the capital of the Republic. Seven deputies of the Senate are appointed by the President.
The Majilis consists of deputies elected in constituencies having one mandate. Parliament’s term of powers is four years.
The Government is the highest body implementing the executive power. The head of the government is the Prime-Minister. He is appointed by the President with the Parliament’s consent. The Government develops the main directions of the social-economic policy of the state, its defence capability, security, guarantee of public orders. The Government in its activity is responsible before the President as well as accountable to the Parliament. It acts within the term of President’s power and resigns its powers to the newly elected President.
Judicial power is exercised by the Supreme Court and local courts. The main achievements in judicial bodies reforming are reflected in the constitutional law of the Republic of Kazakhstan «On judicial system and status of judges in the Republic of Kazakhstan». This law passed on December 25, 2000. The Supreme Court of the Republic of Kazakhstan is the highest judicial body for civil and criminal cases. The control over observation of constitutional laws is implemented by the Constitutional Council. It consists of seven members elected for six years. Besides, the ex-Presidents of the Republic are life-long members of the Constitutional Council. Local public administration is exercised by local representative and executive bodies.
Local representative bodies — maslikhats — express the will of the population of corresponding administrative — territorial units. Local executive power is exercised by oblast administration — akimats with akims of the oblasts at the head. Akims of the oblasts are appointed by the President of the country on the recommendation of the Prime-Minister.