Malta constitution

NATIONAL CHAPTER

MALTA –  Constitution – INDEX 

 

 

Article I. Name of the Chapter.
Article II  Objects of the Chapter.
Article III. Membership.
Article IV. Entrance and Membership fees.
Article V Funds.
Article VI Termination of Membership.
Article VII. The Chapter Council.
Article VIII Legal and Judicial Representative.
Article IX. Titles of Officers of the Order.
Article X. Annual General Meetings.
Article XI. Extraordinary General Meetings.
Article XII.  Constitution Amendments.
Article XIII.  Bye-Laws.
Article XIV. Dissolution of the Chapter by Members.
Article XV.   Dissolution of the Chapter by the Grand Master.

 

 

 

Article I.            NAME of the CHAPTER

The name of the Chapter of Malta shall be “The Constantinian Order of St. George and The Order of The Cross of Constantinople”.

 

Article II.        OBJECTS of the CHAPTER

  1. a)The ideals of the Chapter are the propagation of philanthropic and cultural activities and in particular those connected with philobyzantinism and humanitarianism.
  2. b)The Chapter of Malta is an executive arm of The Constantinian Order of St. George and The Order of the Cross of Constantinople.
  3. c)The Chapter is apolitical and ecumenical

 

Article III.      MEMBERSHIP

  1. a)Membership is open to all those persons who share the same ideals and wish to be enrolled .
  2. b)Council may recommend deserving members as Knights or Dames in the aforesaid Order.
  3. c)Members must be over 21 years of age and should be proposed and seconded by members of the Chapter.
  4. d)Membership will be subject to the approval of Council after Bailiff has scrutinized the proposed member.
  5. e)Council will not be required to give reasons for its acceptance or refusal of a membership.
  6. f)Acceptance into the Chapter entails adherence to the Constitution and its bye-laws.

 

Article IV.      ENTRANCE and MEMBERSHIP FEES

  1. a)Membership of the Chapter entails an entrance fee and an annual subscription fee.
  2. b)The entrance fee is fifty (50) percent less for wives of members.
  3. c)Rates and fees shall be determined by Council.

 

Article V.         FUNDS

(a)    The Chapter is a non-profit organization

(b)    Funds are derived from entrance fees, subscriptions, donations and fund raising activities which it organizes from time to time.

(c)     Knights and Dames (if on their own) are expected to contribute to the Order’s Charity Fund.

(d)    Bank account/s shall be operated by any two of the following Council members:- The Governor, the Hon. Treasurer, the Chancellor.

 

Article VI.      TERMINATION of MEMBERSHIP

Membership may be terminated either by: ­

  1. a)Letter of resignation addressed to the Chancellor of the Chapter for transmission to Council. 

b)       Dismissal in default of payment of the annual subscription or;

c)      Dismissal for grave reasons regarding which the member concerned will     have been asked to give explanations;

d)     Serving Knights and Dames who cease to be members under clauses a to c  of this article or as otherwise determined by Council, may be reported to the Grand Master of the Order to be stripped of their knighthood and titles.

 

Article VII.    The CHAPTER COUNCIL

  1. a)The Chapter will be governed by a Council consisting of a Governor, a Chancellor and a Hon. Treasurer and not more than six (6) other Council Members.
  2. b)The officials will be elected as provided in Bye-Law.2.
  3. c)Members of the Chapter Council will be elected at an Annual General Meeting (AGM) for a period of three (3) years.
  4. d)Vacancies occurring in the Council during the year will be filled by those members of the Order who had attained the greatest number of votes, and if none, by co-option.
  5. e)The duration of the mandate of the new co-opted Council Member will be the same as that of the replaced Council Member.

 

Article VIII.  LEGAL and JUDICIAL Representative

The legal and judicial representation of the Chapter shall be vested in the Governor and Chancellor.

 

Article IX.       TITLES of OFFICERS of the ORDER

  1. a)The Order is divided for the Ladies and Gentlemen in the following degress, awarded at the sole discretion of the Grand Master or on the advisce given to Him by the Council:-

Knight                                       Dame       Va Class

Knight Officer                      Dame      IVa Class

Knight Commander          Dame      IIIa Class

Grand Officier                      Dame       IIa Class

Grand Cross                           Dame         Ia Class

Grand Collier

  1. b)The Grand Master ONLY and of His own freewill, can grant the position of Dame Commander to a Dame as a special tile.

 

Article X.         ANNUAL GENERAL MEETINGS – (AGM)

  1. a)An AGM of the Chapter will be held in the first three months of the year.
  2. b)The Quorum of such a meeting is ten (10).
  3. c)Should there not be a quorum, the AGM will be held half an hour after the time stipulated, irrespective of the number of members present, will then constitute a quorum.
  4. d)At this AGM, two auditors will be appointed to examine and report on the finances of the Chapter for the successive AGM.
  5. e)An Agenda must be sent to all members of the Chapter at least fourteen (14) days prior to the meeting.
  6. f)Should this AGM be the year of election of the Council, a nomination form must also be attached to the Agenda.
  7. g)Any resolution/s to amend the Constitution or to propose/amend the By-Laws of the Chapter passed by Council, must also be attached to the Agenda.

 

Article XI.       EXTRAORDINARY GENERAL MEETINGS – (EGM)

  1. a)An EGM will be called if at least ten (10) members request the holding of such a meeting or if the majority of Council members deems fit.
  2. b)The regulation governing the quorum of the AGM will also apply during any EGM.
  3. c)No other matter can be discussed in an EGM except for those item/s mentioned in the Agenda.

 

Article XII.     CONSTITUTION Amendment/s

  1. a)The Constitution of the Chapter can be amended only at a General Meeting with the approval of two thirds of the members present and voting.
  2. b)Any amendments to the Constitution that has been passed at an AGM or an EGM, Council is to instruct Chancellor to notify the Secretary of the Grand Council of the Order for its final approval.
  3. c)Amendments by the Grand Master or His Grand Council.
  4.   Notwithstanding what Article XII.a and Article XIII stated, the Grand Master can amend this Constitution and its Bye-Laws,
  5.      His decree will be final.

iii.  Council will, upon His decree is given, will amend the Chapter accordingly and inform members of this decree.

Article XIII.  BYE-LAWS

  1. a)Council has the power to make Bye-Laws to better the running of the Chapter.
  2. b)For a Bye-Law to be passed, an eighty percent (80%) vote of the Council members must be achieved.

 

Article XIV.   DISSOLUTION of the CHAPTER by Members

  1. a)The dissolution of this Chapter can only be decided by at least three fourths of the Members present and voting at a General Meeting called specifically for this purpose.
  2. b)The funds and other material goods of the Chapter will be disposed of by two liquidators appointed during the General Meeting who, after having paid all outstanding debts, will donate the balance either to a philanthropic association, organization or institute.

 

Article XV.     DISSOLUTION of the CHAPTER by The GRAND MASTER

Notwithstanding anything stated in Article XIII, the Grand Master may, at His absolute discretion, order the dissolution of the Chapter in which case the assets will be disposed of as contemplated in Article XIV above.

END OF CONSTITUTION

Bye-Laws of the Constitution – INDEX

Bye-Law 1  Council Composition.
Bye-Law 2 Council Election.
Bye-Law 3   Council Quorum and meetings.
Bye-Law 4 Council Voting.
Bye-Law 5  Holding of Minutes.
Bye-Law 6 Date of meetings.
Bye-Law 7 Knighthood and “Numerus Clausus”.
Bye-Law 8 The Right to be a Council member.
Bye-Law 9 The Right to Vote at a General Meting.
Bye-Law 10 The Full Name of the Order.
Bye-Law 11 Postulants.
Bye-Law 12 Termination of a Council member.
Bye-Law 13  Members in the Reserve List.
Bye-Law 14   Induction Oath.

 

Bye-Law 1           COUNCIL COMPOSITION

(a)    Council of the Chapter will be composed of as stated in Article VII.a of the Constitution.

(b)    At least six (6) of the members of the Council shall be Knights or Dames.

(c)     Council can, when deem necessary, form sub-committees to achieve its goals.

(d)    If necessary, Council may co-opt non-voting members for a specific purpose

 

Bye-Law 2           COUNCIL ELECTION

(a)    Members present at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) or at any other General Meeting convened for the purpose of electing members on the Council of the Chapter will proceed with the election of the members as contemplated in Article VII.a of the Constitution either from the list proposed by the Chapter Council and/or from members who have been duly proposed and seconded, as the case may be.

(b)    Should it be necessary to have an election and before proceeding with the election of the Council members, the meeting will appoint a Chairman pro tempore and two (2) tellers to conduct the election

(c)     The nine (9) members offering themselves for Council election, must not indicate their Council position.

(d)    Members of the Council will, as soon as possible after conclusion of the election, meet to elect from amongst themselves the Governor, the Chancellor and the Hon. Treasurer, and to allocate other duties compatible with the ideals and objects of the Chapter to the other six officers of the Council, namely:

1)      Lieutenant-Governor   (To help the Governor and replace him in his absence)

2)        Marshal                     (The enforcement of disciple within the Order)

3)        Bailiff                        (In charge of Memberships and Public Relations)

4)        Hospitaller                 (In charge of Social events)

5)       Custodian of Insignia  (Holding of the Order’s regalia)

6)       Almoner                    (To advise the Council for Funds raising/donations)

(e)     However, Council may change the titles of these six officers as it deems fit, from time to time.

(f)      Should the office of Governor be vacated, for one reason or another, the Lieutenant Governor will automatically take this vacated office.

 

Bye-Law 3           COUNCIL QUORUM and MEETINGS

(a)    The quorum of Council shall be four (4) members.

(b)    Council should meet at least four (4) times a year, two of which can be made via electronic means and will constitute as meetings.

(c)     All electronic meetings must have at least fifty one (51%) confirmation that it was a Council meeting.

(d)    No voting rights will be granted or be made in any electronic meetings.

 

Bye-Law 4           COUNCIL VOTING

(a)    Each Council member has the right of one vote

(b)    Governor will have a casting vote, in addition to his vote, in the case of parity of votes.

(c)     In the absence of the Governor, the Lieutenant Governor will have the casting vote and in his absence, a member (appointed the members present) of the Council shall take the Chair and will enjoy the privilege of the casting vote.

(d)    No Council member can be represented by a Proxy.

 

Bye-Law 5           Holding of MINUTES

Chancellor will keep the minutes of the meetings which will be read and confirmed with or without amendments, at each successive meeting.

 

Bye-Law 6           DATE of MEETINGS

(a)    As stated in Article X.a of the Constitution, the AGM will be held in the first three months of the year.

(b)    During this meeting, apart from other matters, the Governor and the Hon. Treasurer will each give a report of the activities and the finances of the Chapter.

 

Bye-Law 7           KNIGHTHOOD and “NUMERUS CLAUSUS”

(a)    To maintain its elite character, knighthood shall be awarded to those individuals who, because of their achievements, are worthy of bestowment of the knightly honour.

(b)    The National Chapter of Malta shall have a “numerus clausus” in that the total number of Knights and Dames shall not, at anyone time, exceed the total number of one hundred (100).

(c)     Except that wives of serving Knights who are created Dames shall be accepted in addition to the said complement of one hundred (100).

 

Bye-Law 8           The RIGHT to be a COUNCIL MEMBER

(a)    Members of the Malta Chapter, who are serving Council members and/or officers of any other chivalric orders, shall NOT be eligible as members and/or officers on the Council of the Malta Chapter of our Orders.

(b)    This Bye-law 8.(a) can be waived by Council should such member be co-opted to serve in a sub-committee.

 

Bye-Law 9           The RIGHT to VOTE at a GENERAL MEETING

Only those members of the Chapter, who have paid up their subscriptions and any other dues in full, shall be allowed to vote at any General Meeting or sit as members of the Council.

 

Bye-Law 10      The FULL NAME of the ORDER

The full title of our Order is: “The Imperial Supreme Military Orthodox Dynastic Constantinian Order of Saint George (Byzantium) and the Order of the Cross of Constantinople”. However, for practical purposes the name of the National Chapter of Malta shall be as given in Article I of the Constitution.

 

Bye-Law 11      POSTULANTS

(a)    Those members of the Chapter who are not yet “Knights or Dames” shall be considered as “Postulants”, and Council shall examine those who are eligible and invite them to become Knights or Dames.

(b)    “Postulants” have to be members of the Order for at least two years before Council recommends him/her to knighthood.

(c)     Council can waive this Bye-Law 11.(b) if it deems fit that a member is worthy to be knighted.

(d)    The status of “Postulants” shall be as determined by the Council at any given time.

(e)     “Postulants” although classified as members of the Order and can vote at an AGM or EGM, cannot be transferred to the Reserve List on retirement or termination.

 

Bye-Law 12     TERMINATION of a COUNCIL MEMBER

Any Council member who does not attend three (3) Council meetings in a year without a reasonable apology given to Chancellor before the meeting, shall be asked to vacate his seat in Council.

 

Bye-Law 13      MEMBERS in the RESERVE LIST

(a)    Knights and Dames may request to be transferred to retire to the “Reserve List”  if:

1)       Member has attained the age of eighty (80) or over;

2)       Council can, by special request, accept a member in the Reserve List under the age of 80;

3)       Member has made a request in writing to Bailiff stating the reason for such a request.

(b)    List of Rights

1)     Such persons shall retain all titles held and may attend all functions of the Order.

2)     Such persons shall be exempted from the payment of subscription of fees.

3)       Such persons in the Reserve List shall not be entitled to vote at any meeting.

4)       Such persons cannot take part in any discussion unless invited by the Chairman of the Meeting.

5)       Such persons cannot be part of the Council of the Order but can be part of a sub-committee.

(c)     Other matters

1)       Chancellor is to write to such persons, informing them of the Council’s decision.

2)       Their number shall not be considered for the purposes of the “numerus clausus” of the Order- (Bye-Law 7).

 

Bye-Law 14     INDUCTION OATH to be signed by new Knights and Dames on the application.

“I THE UNDERSIGNED, DO SOLEMENLY SWEAR TO KNOW THE STATUTES AND REGULATIONS OF THE ORDER THAT SOLEMN COMMITMENT TO RESPECT AND OBSERVE WITH LOYALTY.  I SWEAR TO OBEY AND REMAIN FAITHFULLY TO THE GRAND MASTER GENERAL PRINCIPLES FOR ALL WITH REGARD TO THE ORDER AND ITS COMPATIBILITY WITH DYNASTY MY HONOUR AND WITH MY DUTIES TOWARDS MY COUNTRY AND MY RELIGION.”