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Bhutan Observer
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Fundamental rights should prevail
Makram Samaan, June 14, 2013
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 Dear Sir,

I had a guest from the US recently who requested me to send you his response to one of your articles. It is regarding the article titled “RCSC reprimands Dr Lotay for making unlawful comments”.

Please ensure that his response is posted in your issue asap. Here is his response: “Bhutan’s Constitutional Democracy is only in the childhood stage of 5 years. As such, all constitutional students and scholars should be on the alert to defend and protect the Fundamental Constitutional rights of the Bhutanese citizens. The ambiguous piece on the front page of April 26, 2013, issue of Bhutan Observer, which claims to be “The Independent Voice”, is a sad story about “unlawful comments”. First of all, the Observer is wrong to claim that Dr Lotay’s criticism is “unlawful”.

The only laws in a constitutional democracy are constructed by the parliament and endorsed by His Majesty the King. The RCSC has regulations, not laws. Therefore, each commission and bureaucratic department regulations MUST be reviewed by the judiciary to see its compliance with the Fundamental Rights of the Bhutanese citizens. In the case of DrLotay, the RCSC’s reprimand for his criticism has reduced him to be less than a Citizen.

The Constitution Article 7, The Fundamental Rights, Section 2, guarantees that a Bhutanese Citizen shall have the RIGHT to freedom of speech, opinion and expression. This right cannot be deprived of any citizen, including DrLotay. Therefore, DrLotay has exercised his Constitutional Fundamental Right. Therefore, he should be commended and NOT reprimanded, and the RCSC should be reprimanded for their attempt to breach DrLotay’s fundamental right. The Constitutional path for RCSC is to submit their regulation to the Judiciary for their opinion on what is constitutional and what is not. Dr Lotay has practiced his constitutional rights to keep the transparency of RCSC and prevent any possible corruption. He has done a favour to RCSC.

Makram Samaan, Ph.D, Professor Emeritus, CSU.S Coaching for Happy Longevity (916) 412-5829

Via DrukselDorji, Thimphu, drukseldorji@gmail.com

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