The Westminster system is a democratic parliamentary system of government modelled after the politics of the United Kingdom. This term comes from the Palace of Westminster, the seat of the Parliament of the United Kingdom.
A member of parliament is a member of the House of Representatives, the lower house of the Commonwealth (federal) parliament. Members may use "MP" after their names; "MHR" is not used, although it was used as a post-nominal in the past. A member of the upper house of the Commonwealth Parliament, the Senate, is known as a "Senator".
In the Australian states of New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia, a Member of the Legislative Assembly (House of Assembly in South Australia) or "lower house," may also use the post-nominal "MP." Members of the Legislative Council (upper house) use the post-nominal "MLC."
The Parliament of The Bahamas is the bicameral national parliament of Commonwealth of The Bahamas. The parliament is formally made up by the Queen (represented by the Governor-General), an appointed Senate, and an elected House of Assembly. It currently sits at Nassau, the national capital.
The structure, functions, and procedures of the parliament are based on the Westminster system.
Members of the Jatiya Sangsad, or National Assembly, are elected every five years and are referred to in English as members of Parliament. The assembly has directly elected 300 seats, and further 50 reserved selected seats for women.
The Parliament of Canada consists of the monarch, the Senate (the upper chamber), and the House of Commons (the lower chamber). Only members of the lower house are referred to as members of Parliament (French: député), while members of the upper house are called senators (French: sénateur). There are currently 105 seats in the Senate and 338 in the House of Commons. Members of Parliament are elected, while senators are appointed by the governor general on behalf of the sovereign at the direction of the Prime Minister of Canada. Retirement is mandatory for senators upon reaching the age of 75 years.
Each province (and territory) has its own legislature, with each member usually known as a Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA). In certain provinces, legislators carry other titles: Member of Provincial Parliament (MPP) in Ontario, Member of the National Assembly (MNA) in Quebec (French: député), and Member of the House of Assembly (MHA) in Newfoundland and Labrador. The provincial upper houses were eliminated through the 20th century.
A Member of Parliament is any member of the Indian Parliament called Sansad, i.e., (Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha). The members of the Lok Sabha are elected popularly by constituencies in each of the Indian states and union territories, while members of the Rajya Sabha are elected indirectly by the state legislatures. Each state is allocated a fixed number of representatives in each chamber, in order of their respective population. The state of Uttar Pradesh has the greatest number of representatives in both houses. The President of India appoints representatives of the Anglo-Indian community. The political party which secures more than half the seats in the Lok Sabha forms the Government of India. If a specific party is unable to form the government with their number of MPs, they may form a coalition government with a number of representatives members of other political parties. The Lok Sabha is the lower house and the Rajya Sabha is the upper house of the Indian Parliament (Bicameral).
The term period of an elected member of the Rajya Sabha is 6 years, while the member elected for the Lok Sabha is only for 5 years.
A member of Parliament was a member of the pre-1801 Irish House of Commons of the Parliament of Ireland. Irish members elected to the House of Commons of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland were also called members of Parliament from 1801 to 1922. Northern Ireland continues to elect MPs to the Parliament of the United Kingdom.
Following the formation of the independent Irish Free State in 1922, members of the lower house of the Oireachtas (parliament), Dáil Éireann (or "the Dáil") are termed Teachtaí Dála (Teachta Dála singular) or TDs and are called a Deputy. The upper house is called Seanad Éireann and its members are called Senators.
The Parliament of Jamaica is the legislative branch of the government of Jamaica. It is a bicameral body, composed of an appointed Senate and an elected House of Representatives. The Senate (upper house), the direct successor of a pre-Independence body known as the "Legislative Council" – comprises 21 senators appointed by the governor-general: thirteen on the advice of the Prime Minister and eight on the advice of the Leader of the Opposition.
The House of Representatives, the lower house, is made up of 63 (previously 60) Members of Parliament, elected to five-year terms on a first-past-the-post basis in single-seat constituencies.
The National Assembly of Kenya has a total of 349 seats; 205 members are elected from the constituencies, 47 women are elected from the counties and 12 members are nominated representatives.
The Parliament of Malaysia consists of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong (King) and two houses, the Dewan Rakyat (the House of Representatives) and Dewan Negara (the Senate).
The term "members of Parliament" only refers to members of the Dewan Rakyat. In Malay, a member of Parliament is called Ahli Parlimen, or less formally wakil rakyat (people's representative).
Members of Parliament are elected from population-based single-seat constituencies using first-past-the-post voting. The Prime Minister must be a member of Parliament.
Members of Parliament are styled Yang Berhormat ("Honourable") with the initials Y.B. appended prenominally. A prince who is a member of Parliament is styled Yang Berhormat Mulia. The Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister and Tuns who are members of Parliament are styled Yang Amat Berhormat ("Most Honourable"), abbreviated Y.A.B.
The Parliament of Malta consists of the President of Malta and the House of Representatives of 69 members (article 51 of the Constitution), referred to as "members of Parliament" (article 52(1) of the Constitution). When appointed from outside the House, the Speaker is also considered a member of the Parliament. The Constitution lists the qualifications and disqualifications from serving as a member of Parliament.
Privileges of members of Parliament and their Code of Ethics are laid out in the House of Representatives (Privileges and Powers) Ordinance.
The Parliament of Nauru consists of 18 seats. Members of Parliament are entitled to use the prefix The Honourable.
The Parliament of New Zealand is made up of the monarch and the unicameral House of Representatives. A member of Parliament is a member of the House of Representatives, which has a minimum of 120 members, elected at a general election for a three-year term. There are 70 electorate MPs, of which seven are elected only by Māori who have chosen to be registered on a separate Māori electoral roll. The remaining members are elected by proportional representation from published party lists.
Before 1951, New Zealand had a bicameral (two-chamber) parliament. Members of the Legislative Council, abbreviated MLC, were appointed. Members of the lower house, the body that still exists, have always been elected. Since 1907, elected members have been referred to as 'Member of Parliament', abbreviated MP. From the 1860s until 1907 they were designated as Member of the House of Representatives, abbreviated MHR. Between the first general election, in 1853, and the 1860s, the designation was Member of the General Assembly, abbreviated MGA.
Member of Parliament refers to a member of Parliament (National Assembly of Pakistan, Qaumi Assembly), based in Islamabad.
Member of Parliament refers to elected members of the Parliament of Singapore, the appointed Non-Constituency members of Parliament from the opposition, as well as the Nominated members of Parliament, who may be appointed from members of the public who have no connection to any political party in Singapore.
In Sri Lanka, a Member of Parliament refers to a member of the Parliament of Sri Lanka (since 1978), the National State Assembly (1972–78) and the House of Representatives of Ceylon (1947–72), the lower house of the Parliament of Ceylon. Members are elected in a general elections or appointed from the national lists allocated to parties (and independent groups) in proportion to their share of the national vote at a general election. A candidate to become an MP must be a Sri Lankan citizen and not hold dual-citizenship in any other country, be at least 18 years of age, and not be a public official or officeholder.
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
The United Kingdom elects members of two parliaments:
and four devolved legislatures:
- the Northern Ireland Assembly, with 90 members known as Members of the Legislative Assembly (MLA). (Between 1921 and 1973, Northern Ireland was governed by the Parliament of Northern Ireland, whose members were known as Members of Parliament.)
- the National Assembly for Wales, with 60 elected members called Assembly Member (AM) in English, Aelod y Cynulliad (AC) in Welsh
- the London Assembly, with 25 members elected under the additional member system every four years, called Members of the London Assembly (AM)
MPs are elected in general elections and by-elections to represent constituencies, and may remain MPs until Parliament is dissolved, which occurs around five years after the last general election, as laid down in the Fixed-term Parliaments Act.
A candidate to become an MP must be a British or Irish or Commonwealth citizen, be at least 18 years of age (reduced from 21 in 2006), and not be a public official or officeholder, as set out in the schedule to the Electoral Administration Act 2006.
Technically, MPs have no right to resign their seats (though they may refuse to seek re-election). However a legal fiction allows voluntary resignation between elections; as MPs are forbidden from holding an "office of profit under the Crown", an MP wishing to resign will apply for the Stewardship of the Chiltern Hundreds or the Stewardship of the Manor of Northstead which are, nominally, such paid offices and thus result in the MP vacating their seat. (Accepting a salaried Ministerial office does not amount to a paid office under the Crown for these purposes.)
The House of Lords is a legislative chamber that is part of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. Although they are part of the parliament, its members are referred to as peers, more formally as Lords of Parliament, not MPs. Lords Temporal sit for life, Lords Spiritual while they occupy their ecclesiastical positions. Hereditary peers may no longer pass on a seat in the House of Lords to their heir automatically. The 92 who remain have been elected from among their own number, following the House of Lords Act 1999 and are the only elected members of the Lords.
"Members of Parliament" are members of the House of Assembly of Zimbabwe. Members of the upper house of Parliament are referred to as Senators.