The National Assembly of Belize is the Legislature or Parliament of Belize. It consists of two Houses: the Senate (Upper House) and the House of Representatives (Lower House). The thirty-one (31) Members of the House of Representatives are elected in general election under the provisions of the Representation of the People Act. Meanwhile, the thirteen (13) Members of the Senate are nominated and appointed by the Governor General of Belize. However, in accordance with the provisions of section 90 of the Belize Constitution, the National Assembly may by law increase the number of Members of the House of Representatives.
The National Assembly of Belize is the body that makes laws for peace, order and good governance of Belize. The Power of the National Assembly to make laws shall be exercised by Bills passed by both Houses and assented to by the Governor General. In other words, no law made by the National Assembly shall come into operation until it has been signed by the Governor General. But the National Assembly can postpone the coming into operation of any such law and can make laws with retrospective effect. All laws made by the National Assembly are styled “Acts”.
The Mace of the National Assembly of Belize is made out of a mahogany, which flourished for many years at the grounds of the Government House in Belize City and was blown down in the hurricane of 1931. It was presented to the Legislative Council on 18 January 1952 by Sir Ronald Garvey. On the Head of the Mace are carved the arms of the Colony and the three principal events of its history: the first Settlement 1638; the Battle of St. George’s Caye 1798 and the formation of the Crown Colony 1871. On the shaft are the names of the 6 districts: Corozal, Orange Walk, Belize, Cayo, Stann Creek and Toledo. The date of the manufacture of the Mace was June 1951, and the names of the craftsmen are: R. N. Downes, Superintendent; L. R. Perera, Carver; and G. P. Gough Turner.