The supreme organ of the state was, according to the 1976 constitution, the People's Assembly, a unicameral legislative body whose 250 members were elected for four years from a single list of approved candidates. All legislative power was vested in the assembly, which met twice a year for a few days. The People's Assembly had the authority to appoint commissions, to carry out special functions, and to conduct investigations. Between sessions the fifteen-member Presidium of the People's Assembly took charge. Proposals for legislation could be made by the Presidium of the People's Assembly, the Council of Ministers, or members of the assembly itself. In order for a bill to become law, a majority of the People's Assembly had to affirm support for it. Rarely did the assembly express anything other than unanimous approval for a bill. The chairman of the Presidium of the People's Assembly was Alia, who thus merged the functions of party and government leader in one person.
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