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A Member of Parliament is a representative of the voters to a parliament. In many countries the term applies specifically to members of the lower house, as upper houses often have a unique title, such as senate, and thus also have unique titles for its members, such as senators. Members of parliament tend to form parliamentary parties with members of the same political party. The term Member of Parliament is often shortened in the media and in every day use to the initialism "MP".

Westminster system


In Australia, the term "Member of Parliament" refers to Members of the House of Representatives, the lower house of the Commonwealth parliament. Members may use "MP" after their names - previously "MHR" was used but this is not current. The members of the upper house of the Commonwealth parliament, the Senate, are known as "Senators".

In Victoria, Members of the Legislative Assembly (lower house) use the post-nominal "MP", but Members of the Legislative Council (upper house) use "MLC".


In Bangladeshmarker, members of the Jatiyo Sangshad, or National Assembly, are elected every five years and are referred to in English as Members of Parliament. The assembly has 345 seats, including 45 reserved for women.


In Canadamarker, the Parliament of Canadamarker consists of the upper house, the Senate of Canada and the lower house, the Canadian House of Commons, but only members of the lower house are referred to as Members of Parliament ( ) in common usage. There are 105 seats in the Senate and 308 in the House of Commons.


In Indiamarker, the term Member of Parliament refers to all the members of the Sansad, the Indian Parliament, whether in the chamber of the Lok Sabha or in that called the Rajya Sabha.

Members of the Lok Sabha are elected popularly by constituencies in each of the Indian states and Union territories, while members of the Rajya Sabha are elected indirectly by the State legislatures. Each state is allocated a fixed number of representatives in each chamber, with the state of Uttar Pradeshmarker having the greatest number. The central government is formed by the party or coalition which has the greatest number of directly elected members in the Lok Sabha.


In Irelandmarker, the term Member of Parliament can refer to the members of the pre-1801 Irish House of Commons of the Parliament of Ireland. It can also refer to Irish members elected to the House of Commonsmarker of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Irelandmarker from 1801 to 1922.

Northern Irelandmarker continues to elect MPs to the modern Parliament of the United Kingdommarker.

Members of the modern Irish lower house of parliament, Dáil Éireann (or "the Dáil") are termed Teachtaí Dála (Teachta Dála singular) or TDs. The upper house is called Seanad Éireann. Its members are called Seanadóirí or Senators.


The National Assembly of Kenya consists of 210 elected members and twelve who are nominated, all being called Members of Parliament.


The Malaysian Parliament is modeled after the Parliament of the United Kingdommarker and consists of two houses, known as the Dewan Rakyat, which is the House of Representatives, and Dewan Negara, the Senate.

The members of the Dewan Rakyat are elected in general elections or by-elections, whereas the members of the Dewan Negara are either appointed by the king, in recognition of outstanding service to their country or chosen by the states. Each state appoints a number of senators proportional to its size.

Members of Parliament are styled Yang Berhormat ("Honourable") with the initials Y.B. appended prenominally. A prince who is a Member of Parliament is styled Yang Berhormat Mulia.


The Parliament of Malta consists of 69 seats, and these seats are shared between two political parties; 35 seats for the Partit Nazzjonalista and 34 seats for the Partit Laburista.


The Parliament of Naurumarker consists of 18 seats and is the legislative institution of the Republic of Nauru. The Parliament House is located in the Yaren district. Members of Parliament are entitled to use the prefix The Honourable.

New Zealand

New Zealandmarker has a unicameral (or singe chamber) parliament, namely the New Zealand House of Representatives, although parliament technically consists of the House and the monarch. Member of Parliament is now the term for a member of the House of Representatives, which normally has 120 members, elected at a general election every three years. There are 69 constituency members, seven of whom are elected by the Māori who have chosen to vote in special Māori seats, while the remaining 51 members are elected by proportional representation from party lists.

Before 1951, New Zealand had a bicameral (or two-chamber) parliament, and there were two designations: Member of the House of Representatives, abbreviated MHR, the body which survives today, and Member of the Legislative Council, abbreviated MLC.


In Pakistanmarker, Member of Parliament refers to a member of Parliament (National Assembly of Pakistan, Qaumi Assembly). The National Assembly is based in Islamabadmarker.


In Singaporemarker, Members of Parliament refers to elected members of the Parliament of Singapore, the appointed Non-Constituency Members of Parliament from the opposition, as well as the Nominated Members of Parliament, who may be appointed from members of the public who have no connection to any political party in Singapore.

Sri Lanka

In Sri Lankamarker, Members of Parliament refers to elected members of the Parliament of Sri Lanka and National List Member of Parliament, who are nominated by the contending parties (and independent groups) in proportion to their share of the national vote. A government is formed by the party or group that has the support of the majority of MPs.

United Kingdom

The United Kingdommarker contains members of three different parliaments:

Between 1921 and 1973, Northern Ireland was governed by the Parliament of Northern Ireland, a devolved assembly whose members were known as Members of Parliament. The present Northern Ireland Assembly's members are known as Members of the Legislative Assembly (MLA).

The National Assembly for Wales consists of sixty elected members, but it is not called a parliament, its members instead being referred to in English as Assembly Members (AMs) or in Welsh as Aelod y Cynulliad (AC).

Members of the House of Commonsmarker of the Parliament of the United Kingdom are elected in general elections and by-elections to represent constituencies by the first-past-the-post system of election, and may remain Members until Parliament is dissolved, which must occur within five years of the last general election, as laid down in the Parliament Act 1911.

A candidate to become a Member of Parliament must be a British or Irish or Commonwealth citizen, must be over 18, and must not be a public official or officeholder, as set out in the schedule to the Electoral Administration Act 2006 [14746] (this was a reduction in the lower age limit, as candidates needed to be 21 until the law came into effect in 2006).

Members of Parliament are technically forbidden to resign their seats (though they are not forbidden from refusing to seek re-election). In order to leave the house between elections voluntarily, a Member of Parliament must accept a "paid office under the Crown". Two nominally paid offices under the Crown  – the Stewardship of the Chiltern Hundreds and the Manor of Northstead – exist to allow members to apply for a paid office under the Crown and thereby to achieve a resignation from the House. Accepting a salaried Ministerial office does not amount to a paid office under the Crown for these purposes. For more information, see the article Resignation from the British House of Commons.

The basic salary of a member of the House of Commons was increased to £64,766 with effect from 1 April 2009 [14747]. Some MPs (ministers, the Speaker, senior opposition leaders etc) receive a supplementary salary for their specific responsibilities. As of the 1 April 2008 these increments range from £14,039 for Select Committee Chairs to £130,959 for the Prime Minister. Members also receive expenses, including paying for buying and furnishing accomodation required when away from their main homes. The pension arrangements of UK MPs are equally generous. The Member will normally receive a pension of either 1/40th or 1/50th of their final pensionable salary for each year of pensionable service depending on the contribution rate they will have chosen. Members who make contributions of 10% of their salary gain an accrual rate of 1/40th[14748].An MP who has served 26 years and retiring today could look forward to receiving an annual inflation-proof payout of £40,000 from his pension.According to a recent report in the Daily Mail, state contributions for British Members of Parliament are more than four times higher than the average paid out by companies for final-salary schemes.

Members of the House of Lordsmarker, however their membership comes about, are members of a legislative chamber which is part of the Parliament of the United Kingdommarker. Although technically they are part of the parliament, yet they are never referred to in the United Kingdom as members of parliament but as peers, or more formally as Lords of Parliament. They sit either for life, in the case of the Lords Temporal, or so long as they continue to occupy their ecclesiastical positions in the case of the Lords Spiritual. Hereditary peers may no longer pass on a seat in the House of Lords to their heir automatically. The ninety-two who remain have been elected from among their own number, following the House of Lords Act 1999, and paradocxically are the only elected members of the Lords.


In Zimbabwemarker, the title "Member of Parliament" is used by members of the House of Assembly of Zimbabwe.

Other systems

Member of Parliament can be used to translate the term used to describe representatives in other parliamentary democracies that do not follow the Westminster system, who are usually referred to in a different fashion such as Deputé in Francemarker, Diputado, Deputado in Portugalmarker and Brazilmarker, Mitglied des Bundestagesmarker (MdB) in Germanymarker. However, better translations are often possible.


In Austriamarker, the term Member of Parliament refers to the members of the two chambers of the Parliament of Austria (Österreichisches Parlament). The members of the Nationalrat are called Abgeordnete zum Nationalrat. The members of the Bundesrat, elected by the provincial diets (Landtage) of the nine federal States of Austria, are known as Mitglieder des Bundesrats.


In Bulgariamarker they are 240 MP's in regular parliament and 400 in the "Great Parliament". The "Great Parliament is elected when a new constitution is in order. In the modern Bulgarian history there have been seven "Great Parliaments," in 1879, 1881, 1886, 1893, 1911, 1946, and 1990.


In Germanymarker, Member of Parliament refers to the elected members of the federal Bundestagmarker Parliament at the Reichstag buildingmarker in Berlinmarker. In German a member is called Mitglied des deutschen Bundestagesmarker (MdBmarker).The 16 federal States of Germany (Länder) are represented by the Bundesratmarker at the former Prussian House of Lordsmarker, whose members are representatives of the respective Länder's governments and not directly elected by the people.In accordance with article 38 of the Basic Law for the Federal Republic of Germany, which is the German constitution, "[m]embers of the German Bundestag shall be elected in general, direct, free, equal, and secret elections. They shall be representatives of the whole people, not bound by orders or instructions, and responsible only to their conscience."


In Israelmarker, the term Member of the Knesset refers to one of the 120 Members of the Knessetmarker.


In the Republican Italianmarker Parliament the current term is Deputato (that is deputy as appointed to act on people's behalf) and so the Lower House takes the name of Camera dei Deputati. Similarly to other countries, the Upper House is called Senato and its members are the Senatori.The Deputati are known by the title onorevole (honorable).

Salary and Bonuses

Basic monthly net salary: € 5.486,58 per month.

Parliamentary attendance bonus: up to € 4.003,11 per month.

Constituency ratio compensation: up to € 4,190 per month.

Travel and transportation expenses' refund: between € 3,323.70 and 3,995.10.

Phone expences' refund up to € 3,098.74 per year.


The Parliament of Lebanonmarker is the Lebanese national legislature. It is elected to a four-year term by universal adult suffrage in multi-member constituencies, apportioned among Lebanon's diverse Christian and Muslim denominations. Its major functions are to elect the President of the Republic, to approve the government (although appointed by the President, the Prime Minister, along with the Cabinet, must retain the confidence of a majority in the Parliament), and to approve laws and expenditure. The name of a deputy in Arabic is Naeb (نائب). The plural of Naeb is Nuwab (نواب).

Republic of Macedonia

In the Republic of Macedoniamarker there are 120 Members of Parliament ( ) which are called 'Pratenici' (singular Pratenik).

The Netherlands

The parliament of the Netherlandsmarker as the Staten-Generaal, literally States-General. It is bicameral, divided in two Kamers (Chambers). The Senate is known in Dutch as the Eerste Kamer (First Chamber) and its members as "senatoren", senators. The House of Representativesmarker, known in Dutch as the Tweede Kamer (Second Chamber), is the most important one. The important debates take place here. Also, the Second Chamber can edit proposed laws with amendments and it can propose laws itself. The Senate doesn't have these capabilities. Its function is more a technical reviewing of laws. It can only pass a law or reject it. Both chambers are in The Haguemarker which is the seat of parliament but not the official capital of the Netherlands, which is Amsterdammarker.

The 150 members of the House of Representatives are elected by general elections every 4 years (unless the government falls). The 75 members of the Senate are elected indirectly. The members of the 12 provincial parlements elect the senators. The value of a vote of a member of a provincial parlement is relative to the population of the province. Provincial parlements, the States-Provincial, are elected by general elections every four years.


In Norwaymarker, the term Members of Parliament refers to the elected members of the Norwegian parliament, Stortingetmarker. These members are called stortingsrepresentanter. Norway has a two-chamber parliament, consisting of Odelstinget and Lagtinget. Odelstinget contains the majority of the parliament members (three fourths, or 127 of the total 169 members). Lagtinget contains the last fourth of the members, and is chosen by popular vote in the parliament at the beginning of each parliament period (the members of parliament are elected for four years at a time). The dividing of the parliament into chambers is only used when it is dealing with passing regular laws and in cases of prosecution by national court (riksrett). In other matters, such as passing the national budget or changing the constitution (the latter requiring a majority of two-thirds), the chambers are united.



In Swedenmarker, Members of Parliament refers to the elected members of the Parliament of Swedenmarker ( ). In Swedish, an MP is usually referred to as a riksdagsledamot or a riksdagsman (the former is in more common use today, especially in official contexts, due its status as a unisex word, while the latter was used more often historically and literally refers to a male MP exclusively).

The parliament is a unicameral assembly with 349 members who are chosen every four years in general elections. In order to become an MP a person must be entitled to vote (i.e. be a Swedish citizen, be at least 18 years old and be or have been resident in Sweden) and must be nominated by a political party.

The salaries of the MPs are decided by the Riksdag Pay Committee (Riksdagens arvodesnämnd), a government agency under the parliament. Since 1 November 2007, the basic monthly pay of an MP is SEK52,900 (ca. US$8,300). The pay of the Speaker is SEK126,000 a month (ca. US$20,000), which is the same as that of the Prime Minister. The Deputy Speakers receive an increment of 30 % of the pay of a member. The chairs and deputy chairs of the parliamentary committees receive a similar increment of 20 % and 15 % respectively.

According to a survey investigation by the sociologist Jenny Hansson , Swedish national parliamentarians have an average work week of 66 hours, including side responsibilities. Hansson's investigation further reports that the average Swedish national parliamentarian sleeps 6.5 hours per night.


In the Kingdom of Thailandmarker, Members of Parliament (สมาชิกสภาผู้แทนราษฎร or ส.ส.) refers to the elected members of the National Assembly of Thailand. Following the military coup d'état on 19 September 2006, all its 500 members are suspended from duty until the next election. The House of Representatives of Thailand was fully reconvened after the general elections under a new constitution. Under the 2007 Constitution there are 480 Members of Parliament, 400 elected from constituencies and the other 80 through party-lists.


In the Republic of Turkeymarker , the term member of parliament refers to the elected members of the Turkish Grand National Assemblymarker, or TGNA ( ), whichhas 550 members elected at a general election for a term of office of four years.

See also


  1. Glossary of Parliamentary Terms for intermediate students
  2. The National Assembly at
  5. [1]
  6. House of Lords Reform

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