0

Pm Says Vote Will Be ‘No Later Than June’

photo

Prime Minister Perry Christie

By KHRISNA VIRGIL

Tribune Staff Reporter

kvirgil@tribunemedia.net

THE referendum to amend the Constitution has been postponed yet again – this time to no later than the end of June 2014, Prime Minister Perry Christie announced to parliamentarians yesterday.

Initially, the electorate was expected to go to the polls this June, but Mr Christie announced in February that the original deadline would be reassigned as the Constitutional Commission requested an extension for the report because it was incomplete. The referendum was then set down for this November.

With that, Mr Christie outlined a schedule of deadlines, giving no specific dates, for which the referendum process was to unfold. The amending bills, he said, will be introduced in the House of Assembly before year’s end.

The passage of those Bills through both Parliament and the Senate is then expected to reach completion by the end of February 2014. An ample period for public education and discussion led by the Constitutional Commission will simultaneously take place, the Prime Minister promised.

The hope is, Mr Christie said, that the new changes will reflect complete equality between Bahamian men and women. A separate commission is to be appointed to deal with the issue of how children born in the Bahamas to non-Bahamian parents should be dealt with in terms of citizenship.

“It will be seen that six separate items would have to be enshrined in the amending bills to bring about gender equality under our Constitution,” he said.

“It should be noted that in all these cases a three quarters majority of the members of each House – first the House of Assembly and then the Senate – would be required to pass the amending bills. After that, assuming, of course, that the bills are carried in each House with the requisite majorities, the bills would have to be submitted to the electorate for approval by a simple majority vote in a constitutional referendum.”

When referendum day arrives next year, the government expects to present Bahamians with questions that address the following amendments:

• A Bahamian woman who is married to a non-Bahamian man will have the same constitutional rights of a Bahamian man to pass on citizenship to her child irrespective of whether the child is born abroad or in the Bahamas.

• A Bahamian woman having the same constitutional rights as a Bahamian man in obtaining citizenship for her foreign spouse, granted that changes be made to safeguard against marriages of convenience.

• A Bahamian man who fathers a child with a foreign woman outside of marriage should have the same constitutional rights that an unwed Bahamian woman has to pass on citizenship to that child subject to his proven paternity.

• The word “sex” should be added to the definition of “discriminatory” in Article 26 of the Constitution to make it unlawful to discriminate against any persons based on sex.

• A provision also will be added to make it clear that the amendment to Article 26 does not overturn the prohibition of same-sex marriages.

The government has further been instructed by the Constitutional Commission to stagger the recommended reforms over a period of years as the constitutional report contained 73 suggestions, 40 of which need formal constitutional amendments, Mr Christie said.

“In recommending this multi-phased approach to constitutional reform, the Commission has expressed a view that the process should begin with a ‘first round pick’ of issues of national priority that are likely to be supported by both sides of the political divide in Parliament,” he said.

Comments

henny 6 years, 8 months ago

Yeah, Yeah, Yeah. Here we go again...PROCRASTINATION at it's best. See what happens in June!!!

0

hj 6 years, 8 months ago

Perhaps in the future,important announcements should be made by people who are really calling the shots. In the meantime, PC can keep boasting that he is the PM.

0

ThisIsOurs 6 years, 8 months ago

Ha-ha one of my friends says the same thing, he's never a situation where someone who has to constantly remind people that he is in charge, it's almost as if he doesn't believe it himself:)

0

ThisIsOurs 6 years, 8 months ago

"Work will expand to fill whatever time you give it"

0

banker 6 years, 8 months ago

This was the exact same plank that the PLP campaigned against when Hubert Ingraham held a referendum on this matter. The Kool-Aid swilling, mindless PLP-ites defeated it and gave the Bahamas a black eye in terms of human dignity and human rights. Now they are delaying it, because this party can't even run a runny nose with a cold. If this wasn't so serious, it would be hilarious.

0

concernedcitizen 6 years, 8 months ago

How come Tals never comments on stuff like this ,but tomorrow when someone in opposition talks about the delay there will be no end of ,comrades ,red shirts ,trusted law partner ,fishermen in coopers town ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,on comrade Tals post

0

banker 6 years, 8 months ago

Russell can't handle the truth, so she lives in her own loveless fantasy world of Red Shirts who leave her as the perpetual wallflower.

0

TalRussell 6 years, 8 months ago

Father forgive my dear two Comrades who together can't rise to the dramatic flair one would expect from kindergartens sporting they now faded from power red t-shirts.. Allow me to suggest you may consider tak'in therapy, from the grand Fruitcake lady. Still friends...right?

... / http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o-1ehD..." rel="nofollow">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o-1ehD...

0

concernedcitizen 6 years, 8 months ago

I ,m not really a red shirt ,i voted for Perry when they ran Tommy .Now that crazy fishermens from coopers town i like..

0

John 6 years, 8 months ago

I have a strong feeling the VAT will also be delayed, especially if the economy takes the big dip that is expected if the US doesn't get its government back up and running. The bible does foretell of the collapse of the US economy, just before the end of time.

0

concernedcitizen 6 years, 8 months ago

The bible was a period piece written by Jews about their struggle and enslavement by the Romans .East and West in those days was about 500 miles ..There was no America and no comprehension of it ,they all believed in the same Abrahamic God until Jesus was born then they differed on who the messiah was ,not here yet ,Jesus ,or Mohammend and have been killing one another ever since to prove who is right .Doesn,t seem too godly to me . You can interpet the bible to mean anything . Every time i hear idiots under the tree claiming Eve brought the sin by eating the apple to absolve themselves as males of their own inferiorities i think what a crutch the fantasy book is ..

0

TalRussell 6 years, 8 months ago

Comrade what do you need some physical proof of Jesus carpentry skills. Maybe a chair or table crafted by His own hands? Can you point out a a better example of someone who walked this earth who gave his own life to encourage the better side of human behavior?" If the Big Book is for real, I'd consider that but an unnecessary bonus.

0

concernedcitizen 6 years, 8 months ago

I do think Jesus was here and i try to emulate him , i just think the bible is a period piece edited by the catholic church . Remember a thousand years before Jesus people wrote about a carpenter born from a virgin ,they called him Krishna ...

0

TalRussell 6 years, 8 months ago

May I ask you to point readers to any credible "historical data," where it states that Vasudeva the father of the Krishna myth, was even a carpenter?

0

ohdrap4 6 years, 8 months ago

Jesus said to give to cesar what belongs to cesar. Let's all pay the VAT. Lord help us.

0

TalRussell 6 years, 8 months ago

Comrade Ohdrap4, Jesus never did say that everything the people work their butts off for, should eventually find its way into Caesar's treasury. Now, did He?

0

concernedcitizen 6 years, 8 months ago

Actually King James put that in the Bible when he was having trouble w/ his populace paying taxes ..IT is doubtful Jesus ever said that ..

0

Sign in to comment