Sudan
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Features of Constitution1

Is there a constitution? Yes
Does the constitution provide for freedom of religion? Yes

Constitution2

Constitution Year 2005
Last Amended not amended
Source Embassy of the Republic of Sudan (Berlin, Germany)
Translation Source is in English
Current as of May 11, 2011

Constitution Excerpts (clauses that reference religion)2

[ARDA Note: See the bottom of this page for relevant excerpts of the Constitution of South Sudan.]


CONSTITUTION OF SUDAN

Preamble

We the people of the Sudan
Grateful to Almighty God who has bestowed upon us the wisdom and will to reach a Comprehensive Peace Agreement that has definitively put an end to the longest running conflict in Africa,
Having survived the tragic consequences that have characterized that debilitating conflict,
Mindful of religious, racial, ethnic and cultural diversity in the Sudan,
Committed to establish a decentralized multi-party democratic system of governance in which power shall be peacefully transferred and to uphold values of justice, equality, human dignity and equal rights and duties of men and women,
Further committed to gearing governance, in the coming phase of our political advancement, towards the enhancement of economic development, promotion of social harmony, deepening of religious tolerance and building trust and confidence in the society generally,


1. Nature of the State

(1) The Republic of the Sudan is an independent, sovereign State. It is a democratic, decentralized, multi-cultural, multi-lingual, multi-racial, multi-ethnic, and multireligious country where such diversities co-exist.
(2) The State is committed to the respect and promotion of human dignity; and is founded on justice, equality and the advancement of human rights and fundamental freedoms and assures multi-partism.
(3) The Sudan is an all embracing homeland where religions and cultures are sources of strength, harmony and inspiration.


4. Fundamental Bases of the Constitution

This Constitution is predicated upon and guided by the following principles:-
�(b) religions, beliefs, traditions and customs are the source of moral strength and inspiration of the Sudanese people,


5. Sources of Legislation

(1) Nationally enacted legislation having effect only in respect of the Northern states of the Sudan shall have as its sources of legislation Islamic Sharia and the consensus of the people.
(2) Nationally enacted legislation applicable to Southern Sudan or states of Southern Sudan shall have as its sources of legislation popular consensus, the values and the customs of the people of the Sudan, including their traditions and religious beliefs, having regard to Sudan�s diversity.
(3) Where national legislation is currently in operation or is to be enacted and its source is religion or custom, then a state, and subject to Article 26 (1) (a) herein in the case of Southern Sudan, the majority of whose residents do not practice such religion or customs may:-
(a) either introduce legislation so as to allow practices or establish institutions, in that state consistent with their religion or customs, or
(b) refer the law to the Council of States to be approved by a two-thirds majority of all the representatives or initiate national legislation which will provide for such necessary alternative institutions as may be appropriate.


6. Religious Rights

The State shall respect the religious rights to:-
(a) worship or assemble in connection with any religion or belief and to establish and maintain places for these purposes,
(b) establish and maintain appropriate charitable or humanitarian institutions,
(c) acquire and possess movable and immovable property and make, acquire and use the necessary articles and materials related to the rites or customs of a religion or belief,
(d) write, issue and disseminate religious publications,
(e) teach religion or belief in places suitable for these purposes,
(f) solicit and receive voluntary financial and other contributions from individuals, private and public institutions,
(g) train, appoint, elect or designate by succession appropriate religious leaders called for by the requirements and standards of any religion or belief,
(h) observe days of rest, celebrate holidays and ceremonies in accordance with the precepts of religious beliefs,
(i) communicate with individuals and communities in matters of religion and belief at national and international levels.


16. Morals and Public Integrity

(1) The State shall enact laws to protect the society from corruption delinquency and social evils and steer the society as a whole towards virtuous social values consistent with religions and cultures of the Sudan.
(2) The State shall enact laws and establish institutions to eliminate corruption, inhibit abuse of power and ensure integrity in public life.


20. Fiscal Levies

(1) No taxes, fees, tariffs or other fiscal dues, shall be levied save by law.
(2) Zakat is a duty on Muslims; its collection, expenditure and administration shall be regulated in the Northern states by law.


23. Duties of the Citizen

(1) It shall be the duty of every Sudanese citizen to pledge allegiance to the Republic of the Sudan, abide by this Constitution, respect the institutions created hereunder and safeguard the territorial integrity of the country.
(2) In particular every citizen shall:
(a) defend the country and respond to the call for national service within the terms of the Constitution and the law,
(b) abhor violence, promote harmony, fraternity and tolerance among all people of the Sudan in order to transcend religious, regional, linguistic and sectarian divisions,


31. Equality before the Law

All persons are equal before the law and are entitled without discrimination, as to race, color, sex, language, religious creed, political opinion, or ethnic origin, to the equal protection of the law.


36. Restriction on Death Penalty

(1) No death penalty shall be imposed, save as retribution, hudud or punishment for extremely serious offences in accordance with the law.
(2) The death penalty shall not be imposed on a person under the age of eighteen or a person who has attained the age of seventy except in cases of retribution or hudud.
(3) No death penalty shall be executed upon pregnant or lactating women, save after two years of lactation.


38. Freedom of Creed and Worship

Every person shall have the right to the freedom of religious creed and worship, and to declare his/her religion or creed and manifest the same, by way of worship, education, practice or performance of rites or ceremonies, subject to requirements of law and public order; no person shall be coerced to adopt such faith, that he/she does not believe in, nor to practice rites or services to which he/she does not voluntarily consent.


39. Freedom of Expression and Media

(1) Every citizen shall have an unrestricted right to the freedom of expression, reception and dissemination of information, publication, and access to the press without prejudice to order, safety or public morals as determined by law.
(2) The State shall guarantee the freedom of the press and other media as shall be regulated by law in a democratic society.
(3) All media shall abide by professional ethics, shall refrain from inciting religious, ethnic, racial or cultural hatred and shall not agitate for violence or war.


40. Freedom of Assembly and Association

(1) The right to peaceful assembly shall be guaranteed; every person shall have the right to freedom of association with others, including the right to form or join political parties, associations and trade or professional unions for the protection of his/her interests.
(2) Formation and registration of political parties, associations and trade unions shall be regulated by law as is necessary in a democratic society.
(3) No association shall function as a political party at national, Southern Sudan or state level unless it has:-
(a) its membership open to any Sudanese irrespective of religion, ethnic origin or place of birth,
(b) a program that does not contradict the provisions of this Constitution,
(c) democratically elected leadership and institutions,
(d) disclosed and transparent sources of funding.


44. Right to Education

(1) Education is a right for every citizen and the State shall provide access to education without discrimination as to religion, race, ethnicity, gender or disability.
(2) Primary education is compulsory and the State shall provide it free.




CONSTITUTION OF SOUTH SUDAN

[ARDA Note: Relevant clauses of the constitution of South Sudan are shown below. This constitution is current as of July 28, 2011 and was written in English. For the full text of this constitution, see the Official Website of the Government of the Republic of South Sudan.]


PREAMBLE

We, the People of South Sudan,
Grateful to the Almighty God for giving the people of South Sudan the wisdom and courage to determine their destiny and future through a free, transparent and peaceful referendum in accordance with the provisions of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, 2005;
�Do hereby, through this Southern Sudan Legislative Assembly, amend the Interim Constitution of Southern Sudan, 2005, which shall be adopted and hereafter referred to as the �Transitional Constitution of the Republic of South Sudan, 2011,� and shall be the supreme law by which the independent and sovereign South Sudan shall be governed during the Transitional Period, and undertake to abide by, respect and defend it.


1. The Republic of South Sudan and its Territory

�(4) South Sudan is governed on the basis of a decentralized democratic system and is an all embracing homeland for its people. It is a multi-ethnic, multi-cultural, multi-lingual, multi-religious and multi-racial entity where such diversities peacefully co-exist.


8. Religion

(1) Religion and State shall be separate.
(2) All religions shall be treated equally and religion or religious belief shall not be used for divisive purposes.


14. Equality before the Law

All persons are equal before the law and are entitled to the equal protection of the law without discrimination as to race, ethnic origin, color, sex, language, religious creed, political opinion, birth, locality or social status.


23. Religious Rights

The following religious rights are guaranteed by this Constitution:
(a) the right to worship or assemble in connection with any religion or belief and to establish and maintain places for these purposes;
(b) the right to establish and maintain appropriate faith-based, charitable or humanitarian institutions;
(c) the right to acquire, possess and own movable and/or immovable property and make, acquire and use the necessary articles and materials related to the rites or customs of religion or belief;
(d) the right to write, issue and disseminate religious publications;
(e) the right to teach religion or beliefs in places suitable for these purposes;
(f) the right to solicit and receive voluntary financial and other contributions from individuals, private and public institutions;
(g) the right to train, appoint, elect or designate by succession appropriate religious leaders called for by the requirements and standards of any religion or belief;
(h) the right to observe days of rest, celebrate holidays and ceremonies in accordance with the precepts of religious beliefs; and
(i) the right to communicate with individuals and communities in matters of religion and beliefs at national and international levels.


25. Freedom of Assembly and Association

(1) The right to peaceful assembly is recognized and guaranteed; every person shall have the right to freedom of association with others, including the right to form or join political parties, associations and trade or professional unions for the protection of his or her interests.
(2) Formation and registration of political parties, associations and trade unions shall be regulated by law as is necessary in a democratic society.
(3) No association shall function as a political party at the National or state level unless it has:
(a) its membership open to any South Sudanese irrespective of religion, gender, ethnic origin or place of birth;
(b) a program that does not contradict the provisions of this Constitution;
(c) a democratically elected leadership and institutions; and
(d) disclosed and transparent sources of funding.


29. Right to Education

(1) Education is a right for every citizen and all levels of government shall provide access to education without discrimination as to religion, race, ethnicity, health status including HIV/AIDS, gender or disability.
(2) All levels of government shall promote education at all levels and shall ensure free and compulsory education at the primary level; they shall also provide free illiteracy eradication programs.


33. Rights of Ethnic and Cultural Communities

Ethnic and cultural communities shall have the right to freely enjoy and develop their particular cultures. Members of such communities shall have the right to practice their beliefs, use their languages, observe their religions and raise their children within the context of their respective cultures and customs in accordance with this Constitution and the law.


38. Education, Science, Art and Culture

(1) All levels of government shall:
�(e) protect cultural heritage, monuments and places of national, historic, or religious importance from destruction, desecration, unlawful removal or illegal export; and


46. Duties of the Citizen

(1) It shall be the duty of every citizen to uphold and abide by this Constitution and respect the laws of South Sudan.
(2) Every citizen shall in particular:
�(b) promote peace, harmony, unity, fraternity and tolerance among all people of South Sudan in order to transcend ethnic, religious, geographical and political divisions;


65. Oath of a Member of the National Legislature

To assume his or her functions, every member of the National Legislative Assembly or the Council of States shall take the following oath before the appropriate House:
�I��.......�....., as a Member of the National Legislative Assembly/Council of States, do hereby swear by Almighty God/solemnly affirm that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the Republic of South Sudan and its people; that I will obey and respect the Constitution and abide by the law; and that I will faithfully and conscientiously discharge my duties and responsibilities as a member of the National Legislative Assembly/Council of States and serve the people of the Republic of South Sudan to the best of my ability, so help me God/ God is my witness.


95. Oath of the President

The President of the Republic of South Sudan shall, before assuming office, take the following oath before the public:
�I���.����., do hereby swear by the Almighty God/solemnly affirm, that as the President of the Republic of South Sudan, I shall be faithful and bear true allegiance to the Republic of South Sudan and shall diligently and honestly discharge my duties and responsibilities in a consultative manner to foster the development and welfare of the people of South Sudan; that I shall obey, preserve and defend the Constitution and abide by the law; and that I shall protect and promote the unity of the people of South Sudan and consolidate the democratic decentralized system of government and preserve the integrity and dignity of the people of South Sudan; so help me God/ God is my witness.�


107. Presidential Advisors

(1) The President may appoint a limited number of Presidential Advisors and shall define their functions.
(2) To assume office, a Presidential Advisor shall, before the President, take the following oath:
�I���.����., do hereby swear by the Almighty God/solemnly affirm, that as a Presidential Advisor, I shall be faithful and bear true faith and allegiance to South Sudan and shall diligently and honestly discharge my duties and responsibilities and strive to foster the development and welfare of its people; that I shall obey, preserve and defend the Constitution and abide by the law; and that I shall protect and promote the unity of the people of South Sudan and consolidate the democratic decentralized system of government and preserve the integrity and dignity of the people of South Sudan; so help me God/ God is my witness.�


122. The Judicial Power

�(5) In adjudicating cases of both civil and criminal nature, the courts shall, subject to the law, apply, inter alia, the following principles:
(a) justice shall be done to all irrespective of their social, political or economic status, gender, religion or beliefs;


139. Basic Values and Guidelines for Civil Service

(1) The Civil Service shall be governed by, inter alia, the following values and principles:
�(d) services shall be provided to all persons impartially, fairly, equitably and without bias or discrimination on the basis of religion, ethnicity, region, gender, health status or physical disability;


169. Guiding Principles for Development and Equitable Sharing of National Wealth

�(6) National wealth and other resources shall be allocated in a manner that will enable each level of government to discharge its legal and constitutional responsibilities and duties and ensure that the quality of life and dignity of all the people are promoted without discrimination on grounds of gender, religion, political affiliation, ethnicity, language or locality.


190. Powers of the President in a State of Emergency

During a state of emergency, the President may, by law or orders, take any measures that shall not derogate from the provisions of this Constitution except as provided herein:
(a) to suspend part of the Bill of Rights; however, there shall be no infringement on the right to life, prohibition against slavery, prohibition against torture, the right of non-discrimination on the basis of race, sex, religious creed, the right to litigation or the right to fair trial;
...


203. National Constitutional Conference

(1) Upon the presentation of the Draft Constitutional Text and Explanatory Report by the Commission, the President of the Republic shall, after consultation with relevant stakeholders, constitute and convene a National Constitutional Conference comprising delegates representing the following categories:
�(e) faith-based organizations;

(2) Each of the categories in sub-Article (1) above shall nominate its delegates and present them to the President for appointment to the National Constitutional Conference.


Schedule (B): Power of States

The exclusive executive and legislative powers of a state shall be as follows:
�9. Regulation of religious matters;

Sources

1.  Data under the "Features of Constitution" heading are drawn from coding of the U.S. State Department's 2008 International Religious Freedom Reports conducted by researchers at the Association of Religion Data Archives. The article by Brian Grim and Roger Finke describes the coding of the International Religious Freedom reports. A dataset with these and the other international measures highlighted on the country pages can be downloaded from this website. Used with permission.

2.  The constitutional excerpts shown above are reproduced from the websites given in the "Source" field; the links to these websites were active as of May 2011. Where the constitutional text shown on these websites was provided in a language other than English, this text was translated to English by ARDA staff with assistance from web-based translation utilities such as Google Translate and Yahoo! Babel Fish. Constitutional text was converted to American English where applicable. Constitutional clauses were judged to contain religious content based largely on the standards used in the construction of the Religion and State Constitutions Dataset collected by Jonathan Fox. Emphases were added to the text by ARDA staff to highlight religious content in articles that also contain content that does not pertain to matters of religion. The data on this page were correct to the best of the knowledge of the ARDA as of the date listed in the "Current as of" field shown above. Please contact us at arda@pop.psu.edu if you are aware of any incorrect information provided on this page.