By Julia Cameron • 04 May 2023 • 10:55
Jamaica wants public referendum in 2024.
Credit: Dan Marsh/Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0
Marlene Malahoo Forte Jamaica’s minister for legal and constitutional affairs was talking to Sky News about how the King’s coronation has accelerated the country’s plans to become a republic.
The governor said a referendum could be held as early as next year and that means Jamaica could become independent of the British monarchy and have its own president sooner rather than later.
She said in the interview: “While the United Kingdom is celebrating the coronation of the King, that is for the United Kingdom, Jamaica is looking to write a new constitution…which will sever ties with the monarch as our head of state.”
She continued: “Time has come, Jamaica in Jamaican hands. We have to get it done, especially with the transition in the monarchy. My government is saying we have to do it now.”
“Time to say goodbye!”
Ms Malahoo Forte acknowledges that the timeline is “ambitious” because it needs public consultation and a bill being brought to parliament. She hopes, she said, to introduce the bill this month, after the coronation.
The passing of the bill could take as long as nine months and it would need to be passed by the people in a referendum.
An attorney general confirmed that the time was right because “a lot of Jamaicans had warm affection and identified with Queen Elizabeth II. When Jamaica became independent Queen Elizabeth was already on the throne.
“But they (the people) do not identify with King Charles. He is as foreign as it gets to us. Plain and simple.”
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Julia is an ex-pat writer from Brighton living in a small village close to the Andalucian town of Priego de Cordoba. When she's not working she enjoys reading, tracing her ancestry and swimming. She especially loves the summer when she can get down to the coast and chill on the beach.
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