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World > North America > Saint Kitts and Nevis > Government and Political Conditions (Notes)

Saint Kitts and Nevis - Government and Political Conditions (Notes)
GOVERNMENT AND POLITICAL CONDITIONS As head of state, Queen Elizabeth II is represented in St. Kitts and Nevis by a governor general, who acts on the advice of the prime minister and the cabinet. The prime minister is the leader of the majority party of the House of Representatives, and the cabinet conducts affairs of state. St. Kitts and Nevis has a bicameral legislature: An 11-member Senate appointed by the governor general (mainly on the advice of the prime minister and the leader of the opposition); and an 11-member popularly elected House of Representatives which has eight St. Kitts seats and three Nevis seats. The prime minister and the cabinet are responsible to the Parliament. St. Kitts and Nevis has enjoyed a long history of free and fair elections, although the outcome of elections in 1993 was strongly protested by the opposition and the Eastern Caribbean Regional Security System (RSS) was briefly deployed to restore order. The elections in 1995 were contested by the two major parties, the ruling People's Action Movement (PAM) and the St. Kitts and Nevis Labour Party. Labour won seven of the 11 seats, with Dr. Denzil Douglas becoming prime minister. In the March 2000 elections, Denzil Douglas and the Labour Party were returned to power, winning eight of the 11 seats in Parliament. The Nevis-based Concerned Citizens Movement (CCM) won two seats and the Nevis Reformation Party (NRP) won one seat. The PAM party was unable to obtain a seat. The constitution gives Nevis considerable autonomy. Nevis has an island assembly, a premier, and a deputy governor general. Under certain specified conditions, it may secede from the federation. In accordance with its rights under the Constitution, in 1996 the Nevis Island Administration under the Concerned Citizens' Movement (CCM) of Premier Vance Amory initiated steps towards secession from the Federation, the most recent being a referendum in 1998 that failed to secure the required two-thirds majority for secession. In the July 10, 2006 Nevis elections for the Nevis Island Administration, the NRP won three of the five seats; the CCM won two. The NRP's Joseph Parry assumed the premiership of Nevis. While opposing secession, the Government acknowledged the constitutional rights of Nevisians to determine their future independence. Constitutional safeguards include freedom of speech, press, worship, movement, and association. Like its neighbors in the English-speaking Caribbean, St. Kitts and Nevis has an excellent human rights record. Its judicial system is modeled on British practice and procedure and its jurisprudence on English common law. Principal Government Officials Chief of State--Queen Elizabeth II Governor General--Sir Cuthbert M. Sebastian Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Sustainable Development, Information and Technology, Tourism, Culture and Sport--Dr. Denzil Llewellyn Douglas Minister of Foreign Affairs--Dr. Timothy Sylvester Harris Ambassador to the United States and Permanent Representative to the OAS--Dr. Izben Williams Ambassador to the UN--Delano Bart Principal Nevis Island Government Official, Premier--Joseph Parry The embassy of St. Kitts and Nevis is located at 3216 New Mexico Ave., NW, Washington, D.C. 20016 (tel. 202-686-2636).


Facts at a Glance: Geography - People - Government - Economy - Communications - Transportation - Military - Climate - Current Time - Ranking Positions - East Caribbean Dollar Exchange Rates
Notes and Commentary: Economy - Government and Political Conditions - Historical Highlights - Foreign Relations - Relations with U.S.



Facts at a Glance
Geography
People
Government
Economy
Communications
Transportation
Military
Climate
Current Time
Ranking Positions
East Caribbean Dollar Exchange Rates


Notes and Commentary
Economy
Government and Political Conditions
Historical Highlights
Foreign Relations
Relations with U.S.





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