Cameroon has a bicameral parliament composed of the Senate and the National Assemble. The Senate was created in 1996 following an amendment to the constitution that created the upper chamber.
The senate effectively became operation in 2013 following the signing of Presidential decree 2013/056 on 27 February 2013 that convene the Electoral College and call elections for the Senate.
According to the constitutions, the Senate has 100 seats, representing ten senators per region. Of the number 70 are elected while 30 appointed by the President of the Republic.
The first senatorial elections in Cameroon were organised on Sunday, 14th April 2013. The electoral college composed of 10,636 Municipal Councillors from the 360 municipal councils in the country voted in their divisional headquarters.
At the end of the poll, the Cameroon People Democratic Movement, CPDM party had the majority of senator elected after winning in eight out of the ten regions. The Social Democratic Front, SDF opposition party grabbed the majority votes in the Adamawa and West regions were the CPDM list was disqualified and not allowed to run. Amongst the 30 senators appointed the President of the Republic include some members of other opposition parties.
During the first session as of right of the senate chaired by the Eldest member Senator Victor Mukete, the bureau of the senate was elected and Marcel Niat Njifenji was made the pioneer president of the senate in Cameroon.
As per the constitution, the President of the Senate is the constitutionally designated successor to the President of the Republic in case of a vacancy in the latter office.
The mandate of the first legislated of the Senate expired in 2018 and fresh elections were organised on 25th March 2018. At the end of the elections, the CPDM won in nine out of the ten regions while the SDF won in the North West region.
The Chairmen’s conference composed of Presidents of Parliamentary Groups, Chairmen of Committees and members of the Bureau of the Senate and a member of Government draw the agenda of the senate.
Each year, the Senate hold three ordinary sessions, each lasting not more than 30 days. At the opening of its first ordinary session, the Senate elects its President and Bureau members.
The Senate meets in extraordinary session for not more than 15 days on a specific agenda and at the request of the President of the Republic or of one-third of its members.