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Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996 (Act No. 108 of 1996)


Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on their Destruction

Article VIII : The Organization

B. The Conference of the States Parties

Composition, procedures and decision-making


9. The Conference of the States Parties (hereinafter referred to as "the Conference") shall be composed of all members of this Organization. Each member shall have one representative in the Conference, who may be accompanied by alternates and advisers.


10. The first session of the Conference shall be convened by the depositary not later than 30 days after the entry into force of this Convention.


11. The Conference shall meet in regular sessions which shall be held annually unless it decides otherwise.


12. Special sessions of the Conference shall be convened:
(a) When decided by the Conference;
(b) When requested by the Executive Council;
(c) When requested by any member and supported by one third of the members; or
(d) In accordance with paragraph 22 to undertake reviews of the operation of this Convention.


Except in the case of subparagraph (d), the special session shall be convened not later than 30 days after receipt of the request by the Director-General of the Technical Secretariat, unless specified otherwise in the request.


13. The Conference shall also be convened in the form of an Amendment Conference in accordance with Article XV, paragraph 2.


14. Sessions of the Conference shall take place at the seat of the Organization unless the Conference decides otherwise.


15. The Conference shall adopt its rules of procedure. At the beginning of each regular session, it shall elect its Chairman and such other officers as may be required. They shall hold office until a new Chairman and other officers are elected at the next regular session.


16. A majority of the members of the Organization shall constitute a quorum for the Conference.


17. Each member of the Organization shall have one vote in the Conference.


18. The Conference shall take decisions on questions of procedure by a simple majority of the members present and voting. Decisions on matters of substance should be taken as far as possible by consensus. If consensus is not attainable when an issue comes up for decision, the Chairman shall defer any vote for 24 hours and during this period of deferment shall make every effort to facilitate achievement of consensus, and shall report to the Conference before the end of this period. If consensus is not possible at the end of 24 hours, the Conference shall take the decision by a two-thirds majority of members present and voting unless specified otherwise in this Convention. When the issue arises as to whether the question is one of substance or not, that question shall be treated as a matter of substance unless otherwise decided by the Conference by the majority required for decisions on matters of substance.