The President of the Republic

Chapter V The President of the Republic

Article 77:Head of State

The President of the Republic is the Head of State of Estonia.

Article 78:Functions

1.The President of the Republic shall:
  1. represent the Republic of Estonia in international relations;
  2. appoint and recall, on proposal by the Government, diplomatic representatives of the Republic of Estonia and accept letters of credence of diplomatic representatives accredited in Estonia;
  3. declare regular Parliament elections, and early elections for the Parliament, in accordance with Articles 89, 97, 105 and 119;
  4. convene the new complement of the Parliament in accordance with Article 66, and shall open its first session;
  5. propose to the Speaker of the Parliament to convene an extraordinary session of the Parliament in accordance with Article 68;
  6. proclaim laws in accordance with Articles 05 and 107 and shall sign documents of ratification;
  7. issue edicts in accordance with Articles 109 and 110;
  8. initiate amendments to the Constitution;
  9. determine the candidate for Prime Minister in accordance with Article 89;
  10. appoint and recall members of the Government, in accordance with Articles 89, 90 and 92;
  11. present proposals to the Parliament for appointments to the offices of the Chairman of the National Court, the Chairman of the Council of the Bank of Estonia, the Auditor-General, the Legal Chancellor and the Commander or the Commander-in-Chief of the Defense Forces;
  12. appoint, on proposal by the Council of the Bank of Estonia, the President of the Bank of Estonia;
  13. appoint judges on proposal by the National Court;
  14. appoint and recall from office the Government of the Republic and, on proposal by the Commander of the Defense Forces, officers in the Defense Forces;
  15. confer civil and military honors and diplomatic ranks;
  16. be the Supreme Commander of Estonia's national defense;
  17. present proposals to the Parliament on declarations of a state of war, on orders for mobilization and demobilization and, in accordance with Article 129, on proclamations of a state of emergency;
  18. declare, in cases of armed aggression against Estonia, a state of war, shall issue orders for mobilization and shall appoint a Commander-in-Chief of the Defense Forces, in accordance with Article 128;
  19. grant mercy, on the request of prisoners, by freeing those sentenced or reducing the sentence;
  20. initiate the placing of criminal charges against the Legal Chancellor, in accordance with Article 145.
Article 79: Election

1. The President of the Republic shall be elected by the Parliament, or, in the case described in Paragraph 4), by the Electoral Body.

2. The right to present a candidate for President of the Republic shall rest with at least one-fifth of the complement of the Parliament.

3. Any Estonian citizen by birth, who is at least forty years of age, may be presented as a candidate for President of the Republic.

4. The President of the Republic shall be elected by secret ballot. Each member of the Parliament shall have one vote. A candidate who is supported by a two-thirds majority of the complement of the Parliament shall be considered to be elected. Should no candidate receive the required majority, then a new vote shall be organized on the next day. Before the second round of voting, there shall be a new presentation of candidates. Should no candidate receive the required majority in the second round, then a third round of voting shall be organized on the same day between the two candidates who received the most votes in the second round. Should the President of the Republic still not be elected in the third round of voting, the Speaker of the Parliament shall convene, within one month, an Electoral Body to elect the President of the Republic.

5. The Electoral Body shall be comprised of the members of the Parliament and representatives of the local government council. Each local government council shall elect at least one representative, who must be an Estonian citizen, to the Electoral Body.

6. The Parliament shall present to the Electoral Body as candidates for President the two candidates who received the greatest number of votes in the Parliament. The right to present a presidential candidate shall also rest with at least twenty-one members of the Electoral Body.

7. The Electoral Body shall elect the President of the Republic with a majority of those members of the Electoral Body who are present. Should no candidate be elected in the first round, a second round of voting shall be organized on the same day between the two candidates who received the highest number of votes.

8. Further procedures for the election of the President of the Republic shall be determined by the Law On Electing the President of the Republic.

Article 80: Term

1. The President of the Republic shall be elected for a term of five years. No person may be elected to the office of President of the Republic for more than two consecutive terms.

2. The regular election for President of the Republic shall be held no earlier than sixty and no later than ten days before the end of the term of the President of the Republic.

Article 81: Oath

The President of the Republic shall assume office by swearing the following oath of office to the Estonian people before the Parliament:

 "In assuming the office of President of the Republic, I given- and surname) hereby solemnly swear that I will unswervingly defend the Constitution and the laws of the Republic of Estonia, exercise the power entrusted to me in a just and equitable manner, and honorably fulfill my duties to the best of my ability and to the best of my understanding, for the benefit of the Estonian people and the Republic of Estonia."

Article 82: Termination of Authority

1.The authority of the President of the Republic shall terminate on:
  1. resigning from office;
  2. being convicted of an offense;
  3. his or her death;
  4. a new President of the Republic assuming office.

Article 83: Inability

1. If the President of the Republic, according to a resolution by the Parliament, is continuously unable to fulfill his or her duties due to the state of health, or he or she is unable to fulfill them temporarily, in cases specified by law, or his or her term has ended prematurely, his or her duties shall temporarily be transferred to the Speaker of the Parliament.

2. During the period when the Speaker of the Parliament is fulfilling the duties of the President of the Republic, his or her authority as a member of the Parliament shall be suspended.

3. The Speaker of the Parliament as acting President of the Republic shall not have the right to declare early elections for the Parliament or to refuse to proclaim laws, without the consent of the National Court.

4. Should the President of the Republic be unable to fulfill his or her duties for over three consecutive months, or if his or her authority has terminated prematurely, the Parliament shall elect a new President of the Republic within fourteen days, in accordance with Article 79.

Article 84: Incompatibility

Upon assuming office, the authority and duties of the President of the Republic in all elected and appointed offices shall cease, and he or she shall suspend his or her membership in political parties.

Article 85: Immunity

The President of the Republic may be charged with a criminal offense only on proposal by the Legal Chancellor, with the consent of the majority of the complement of the Parliament.