Sample code of conduct for a member of a constitution-making body

I. General Principles

  1. By accepting this office, a constitutional commissioner undertakes to fulfill to the best of his or her ability the letter and spirit of [whatever law has created the constitution-making body] and this code of conduct. A constitutional commissioner shall work collaboratively toward producing a draft of the constitution [or a report, depending on the mandate].
  2. The position of a constitutional commissioner is a high public office, carrying with it strong ethical obligations. The conduct of a constitutional commissioner should always uphold the dignity and solemn responsibility attached to the task of drafting the constitution. A constitutional commissioner must therefore act with honesty and propriety and ensure that his or her conduct does not discredit the constitutional commission at any time.
  3. The duty of a constitutional commissioner is to act in the best interests of the people of [Country X].
  4. A constitutional commissioner shall exercise his or her functions without regard to any improper influence, direct or indirect, from any source.
  5. A constitutional commissioner is appointed on a full-time basis. A constitutional commissioner must not accept retainers, honoraria, or income from work other than his or her remuneration as a constitutional commissioner.
  6. A constitutional commissioner shall at no time afford any undue preferential treatment to any group or individual, discriminate against any group or individual, or otherwise abuse the power vested in him or her.
  7. No constitutional commissioner, by his or her membership, association, statement, or in any other manner, shall jeopardize the credibility, impartiality, or integrity of the constitutional commission.
  8. Constitutional commissioners, other than the chair, shall not speak on behalf of the commission. The chair of the constitutional commission is the spokesperson of thecommission, and the chair or his or her designate has the sole authority to speak on behalf of the commission.

II. Decisions or Deliberations of the Constitutional Commission

  1. Constitutional commissioners shall be bound by the decisions of the commission made in accordance with [Law or Mandate X] and shall not harm the credibility of the commission by undermining those decisions in public. This provision is particularly important regarding the commission’s deliberations on the draft of the constitution that is prepared for submission to the [Body X].

III. Confidential Information

  1. Matters of a confidential nature in the possession of a constitutional commissioner shall be kept confidential and shall not be used for the private or public benefit of the constitutional commissioner. Such restrictions shall apply also after the constitutional commissioner’s tenure is concluded.

IV. Attendance

  1. Constitutional commissioners have been entrusted with an important task and must make every effort to carry out their duties with diligence and attend every meeting of the commission, including public consultation meetings.

V. Compliance

  1. Constitutional commissioners shall comply with the provisions of this code of conduct and [Law X].
  2. In the event of uncertainty about any of the provisions of this code of conduct, a constitutional commissioner shall consult the chair of the commission.
  3. A constitutional commissioner may be removed from office by [X] based on evidence indicating incapacity or incompetence, or the commission of an act that violates his or her oath or the code of conduct.