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All decrees, resolutions and orders of the President of the Republic must be authorized by the secretaries of State within their respective branches. Art. 115. The following persons can not be secretaries of State:

1. Contractors for public works or services on account of the nation.

2. Persons who as a result of their contracts have claims in their own interest against the public treasury.

3. Debtors of the public treasury.

4. Persons administering public funds, until their accounts are finally settled.

5. Relatives of the President of the Republic within the second degree of consanguinity or affinity.

ART. 116. The secretaries of State may attend, without voting, the deliberations of the legislative power, and they shall be obliged to attend whenever called upon and answer inquiries made of them by any representative in regard to the affairs of the administration, except those relating to war and foreign relations, when secrecy is deemed necessary, unless the house decides to the contrary.


ART. 117. The judicial power of the Republic shall be exercised by a Supreme Court of Justice, by the Courts of Appeal, and by the judges and other employees which the law may establish. The Supreme Court shall reside at the capital, and shall be composed of five sitting magistrates. There shall be also two substitute magistrates.

There shall be three Courts of Appeal, one situated in the city of Granada, another at Leon, and the third at Bluefields. The first two shall be composed of six sitting magistrates, three for each of the two sections, civil and criminal; that of Bluefields shall have three sitting magistrates, and two substitute magistrates. The inferior judges shall be determined by statute.

The magistrates of the Supreme Court and of the Courts of Appeal shall be appointed by Congress in joint session. The term of office of the former shall be six years, and that of the latter four years.

Congress may create other Courts of Appeal.

Art. 118. The magistrates must be citizens in the exercise of their rights, of the secular estate, lawyers and over 30 years of age.

Art. 119. Persons connected by relationship of consanguinity within the fourth degree, or of affinity within the second degree, can not be magistrates or judges in the same court.

If two or more persons related within these degrees are elected, the person receiving the highest number of votes shall be preferred, and in case of a tie, the senior lawyer.

The election of the others shall be made over again.

Art. 120. The law shall regulate the organization of the judicial power and the administration of justice.

ART. 121. The right to judge and carry out judgments belongs to the courts and the other tribunals of justice.

Art. 122. The tribunals and judges of the Republic shall preferably apply:

1. The Constitution and constitutive laws.
2. The laws and legislative decrees.

3. The executive decrees and resolutions. In no case shall they apply provisions or revisions made by virtue of an official communication.

ART. 123. The Supreme Court of Justice shall furthermore exercise the following attributions:

1. To adopt its internal rules.

2. To take exclusive cognizance of official and common offenses committed by the high officials, when Congress has declared that there are grounds for their impeachment.

3. To authorize lawyers, court clerks, or notaries who have been admitted within or outside the Republic to the practice of their profession, and to suspend and reinstate them in accordance with the law.

4. To take cognizance of appeals against the resolutions of the Court of Accounts.

5. To take cognizance of appeals for review and for asylum in the cases provided by law.

6. To take cognizance of maritime prize cases, and of the other matters referred to it by law.

7. To appoint inferior judges, forensic physicians and registrars of the property in accordance with the law.

8. To accept the resignations of the employees appointed by it, and even to remove them before the expiration of their term of office, with or without stating grounds for doing so, it being necessary in the latter case that the resolution be adopted unanimously.

9. To decide the protests made against ordinances issued by municipalities and other local administrative corporations, when contrary to the Constitution and the laws.

Art. 124. Any person injured in his rights by the application of a law in a particular case may challenge the constitutionality thereof directly before the Supreme Court of Justice, provided the law relates to matters not triable before the courts of justice.

Art. 125. The administration of justice in the Republic shall be gratuitous.

ART. 126. Members of courts of justice shall not hold any office filled by popular election, or carrying with it additional jurisdiction.

Art. 127. Courts of justice may demand the aid of the armed forces for the execution of their decisions and if the armed forces are refused them, or are unavailable, they may demand such aid from the citizens. Any official or citizen who unduly refuses to render that aid shall incur liability.

Art. 128. In no case shall there be more than three instances, and the same judges shall not officiate in more than one thereof.

ART. 129. In civil matters, the jury may be called upon to pass on the facts when so requested by the parties, and in this case the judge shall merely apply the law.

Art. 130. The magistrates of the courts of justice shall enjoy the same immunities and prerogatives as the representatives in Congress, except the exemption from civil suit.

ART. 131. The magistrates of the Supreme Court of Justice may, with a voice but without a vote, attend the deliberations of either of the legislative houses, or of both in joint session, whenever they relate to matters originating in said court or to those dealt with in Article 99.


Art. 132. The budget shall be passed by Congress in view of the recommendations of the executive and judicial powers, within their respective spheres.

Art. 133. The budget bill shall be presented by the Minister of the Treasury fifteen days at the latest after Congress convenes.

Art. 134. All expenditures made outside of the budget are unlawful, and the official ordering them and the disbursing officer shall be jointly responsible for the amount expended, without prejudice to whatever penalties may be incurred according to law. ART. 135. The treasury of the nation shall comprise:

1. All its real and movable property.
2. All outstanding credits.

3. All duties, imposts and taxes paid into the treasury by the inhabitants of the Republic.

ART. 136. For the administration of the public revenues, there shall be a general office for collection and disbursement as well as such other offices as may be necessary.

Art. 137. In order to hold the office of Treasurer General, it shall be necessary to be over 30 years of age, a citizen in the exercise of his rights, and of well-known good conduct, and not be a creditor or debtor to the public treasury or have accounts pending therein. Art. 138. For the purpose of exercising the supervision of the national treasury, there shall be a Court of Accounts, which shall be in charge of examining and finally settling the accounts kept by officers administering public interests.

The members of this Court must fulfill the same requirements as the Treasurer General, but all employees except the president may be appointed when they are over 25 years of age. Their number, organization and attributions shall be determined by the law, and their appointments as well as that of the Treasurer General belong to the executive power.

ART. 139. No public authority, official or corporation can clude contracts in which property or funds belonging to the nation or to local boards are involved for any purpose, without previously calling for bids and publishing proposals made. Cases are excepted in which, owing to the nature of the contracts, these must be concluded with certain individuals, or in which, owing to the small amount involved, it is not necessary to call for bids. The law shall regulate this matter.


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ART. 140. The public forces are established for the sake of assuring the rights of the nation, the enforcement of law and the maintenance of public order.

Art. 141. The discipline of the army shall be regulated by military laws and ordinances. No armed body shall be allowed to deliberate or to exercise the right of petition.

Soldiers in actual service shall not be permitted to hold offices filled by popular election.

Art. 142. Military service is compulsory, but in time of peace this duty may be discharged through substitutes. Every male Nicaraguan from 18 to 45 years of age is a soldier in the army. The law shall provide for the proper organization, and specify the grounds for exemption from service.

Ministers of any form of religious worship shall render service in the army only as chaplains or in the ambulance service.

Art. 143. There shall be no attractive jurisdiction, and military persons in actual service shall be subject to military jurisdiction for purely military offenses.


Art. 144. For purposes of political administration, the territory of the Republic shall be divided into departments, and there may be districts, the number and boundaries of which shall be fixed by law.


Art. 145. The local government of the towns shall be in charge of municipalities elected by the popular, public and direct vote of the citizens of the respective towns in accordance with the law.

Art. 146. The number of members of the municipalities shall be determined by law, taking into account the number of inhabitants of each town.

ART. 147. The attributions of the municipalities shall be purely economic and administrative. They shall be determined by law, as shall also the requirements laid down in order to become a member thereof.

ART. 148. Municipalities may freely levy local taxes in accordance with the Constitution and the general laws, submitting them to the approval of the executive when they affect solely the interests of the respective town or of the department to which it belongs, and to the legislative power when they impose burdens on one or more other departments, even though indirectly.

ART. 149. Municipalities shall administer the funds of the community for the benefit of the latter, rendering an account to the superior authority established by law, and they shall publish annually a detailed report of the receipts and expenditures of their funds.

ART. 150. In the exercise of their exclusive functions, they shall be independent of the other authorities, but in no case shall they act against the general laws of the country; and they shall be responsible collectively and individually before the courts of justice for any abuses they may commit.

Art. 151. Municipalities shall appoint their own officials, and they may also appoint local police agents for purposes of order, security, sanitation, comfort, improvement and recreation, and they may enact regulations on this subject, subject to the general laws.

ART. 152. The members of the municipalities shall not be obliged to discharge any other duties, not even military service in time of war.

ART. 153. Municipal resolutions having the character of local laws shall be submitted for the approval of the executive.


Art. 154. Every public official upon assuming office shall take an oath to observe and cause to be observed the Constitution and the laws, and shall be responsible for his acts.

ART. 155. The President of the Republic, senators, deputies, magistrates of the courts of justice, secretaries and under-secretaries of State and ministers and diplomatic agents shall be responsible before Congress for common offenses and for official offenses which they

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