The Law Reform Commission is a body corporate. Its mission is to
- keep under review in a systematic way the law of Mauritius;
- make recommendations for the reform and development of the law of Mauritius;
- advise the Attorney General on ways in which the law of Mauritius can be made as understandable and accessible as is practicable.
The Commission has the power to
- initiate proposals for the review, reform or development of any aspect of the law of Mauritius and to receive and consider any such proposal made or referred to it by the Attorney-General or any other person;
- initiate, sponsor and carry out such studies and research as it thinks expedient for the proper discharge of its functions;
- conduct public hearings, seek comments from the public on its proposals, and consult any person or class of persons;
- request information from any Government department, any organization or person in relation to the review, reform or development of any aspect of the law of Mauritius;
- publicise such parts of its work in such manner as it thinks expedient. The Attorney General may, at any time, request the Commission to examine any aspect of the law of Mauritius, and the Commission shall review that aspect of the law accordingly and report to the Attorney General thereon with its recommendations.
The Commission consists of
- a Chairperson, appointed by the Attorney General;
- a representative of the Judiciary appointed by the Chief Justice;
- the Solicitor-General or his representative;
- the Director of Public Prosecutions or his representative;
- a barrister, appointed by the Attorney General after consultation with the Mauritius Bar Council;
- an attorney, appointed by the Attorney General after consultation with the Mauritius Law Society;
- a notary, appointed by the Attorney General after consultation with the Chambre des Notaires;
- a full-time member of the Department of Law of the University of Mauritius, appointed by the Attorney General after consultation with the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Mauritius; and
- two members of the civil society, appointed by the Attorney General.
The Commission employs staff and may have recourse to the services of professionals for the efficient carrying out of its functions. The Chief Executive Officer, who is the Responsible Officer, has responsibility for all research to be done by the Commission in the discharge of its functions, for the drafting of all reports to be made by the Commission and, generally, for the day-to-day supervision of the staff and work of the Commission. A Secretary to the Commission is responsible, under the supervision of the Chief Executive Officer, for the administration of the Commission and taking the minutes of all the proceedings of the Commission.
In order to advise and assist it on any project, the Commission may establish an advisory panel presided over by a member and consisting of persons having specialized knowledge in, or particularly affected by, the matter to be studied and such other members as the Commission may deem appropriate.
Following the necessary research, discussion and consultation on any project, the Commission normally produces one of the following publications:
- Issue Paper: this is a paper identifying issues on which interested parties are invited to make submissions;
- Research or Review Paper: this contains the findings of research (analytical or empirical) done on specific topics;
- Consultation Paper: a paper highlighting matters regarded as problematic and outlining reform options;
- Discussion or Working Paper: a thorough paper on an area of the law regarded as unsatisfactory with proposals for reform;
- Report: This sets out the results of the Commission’s research and consultation and usually makes a number of recommendations for law reform to Government.
An Issue Paper or Research/Review Paper, as well a Consultation or Discussion/Working Paper, will usually be followed by a report (to which is attached a draft Bill).
The Commission submits every year an annual report to the Attorney General on its activities during the preceding year. A copy thereof is laid before the National Assembly.
The Commission considers our laws should be responsive to the needs of society, in the light of the exigencies of globalization, reflect best international practices and be in conformity with our international obligations. Its vision is that of just, fair and efficient laws that reflect and advance the Nation’s social and economic interests.
Marie Joseph Emmanuel Guy Ollivry, QC, GOSK
First Chairperson of the Law Reform Commission (2006 – 2015)
Pierre Rosario Domingue
First CEO of the Law Reform Commission (2006 – 2020)