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Bahamas: Former AG: Bahamas shift to republic is inevitable

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Former Attorney General Sean McWeeney, Q.C. yesterday said the country’s shift to a republic is inevitable in the political evolution of the country, but would likely have to be driven by the government.

McWeeney’s comments follow an announcement from Barbados on Monday, that it will remove Queen Elizabeth II as its head of state and transition to a republic by November next 2021 – the 55th anniversary of its independence.

He noted there was no vast public appetite for The Bahamas to make a similar move.

Two previous Constitutional Commissions have made recommendations regarding the retention of the Queen of England as the Bahamas’ Head of State, with both commissions reporting mixed feelings from the public.

“There is a kind of unspoken acceptance of the fact that in the evolution of the political society of The Bahamas, the attainment of republican status is probably something that is inevitable,” said McWeeney, who headed the 2012 Constitutional Commission.

“Whether it happens in the next 10 years, or the next 20 years, or the next 100 years, I think it depends a lot on what priority the government of the day would attach to it.”

“Clearly the present government has no interest in it. The government of Mr. [Perry] Christie which preceded the present one had no interest in it.

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