KINGSTON, Jamaica, Tuesday, September 20, 2022. The Advocates Network pressure group is urging the government to expedite the process of removing the new monarch, King Charles III, as the Head of State of Jamaica.
In a statement today, the Advocates Network said “Now that the official period of mourning for the death of the Queen has ended, which greatly distracted the government from its focus on serving the people of Jamaica, the Advocates Network (AN) calls on the government of Jamaica to expedite the process of removing the new monarch, King Charles III, as Head of State.
"It is now more than six (6) months since Prime Minister (PM) Holness announced in Parliament that: “we will establish an advisory committee, including bi-partisan representatives” to advise the government on how to move Jamaica from a constitutional monarchy to a Republic."
He noted that, “the approach must be collaborative and guided by expert advice." Days later, on March 24, 2022, he uttered those famous words to the Duke of Cambridge, William: “We are moving on," the orgaization said.
We note that the 2022/2023 budget has taxpayers funding some $572,205,000 associated with the new Ministry of Legal and Constitutional Affairs established in January 2022.
The primary objective was to "reform the Constitution to enable Jamaica to transition from a constitutional monarchy to a republic."
We note with great concern that over these eight months there has been no agenda, plan, nor strategy to achieve this objective. On June 7, 2022, the Minister of Legal and Constitutional Affairs, Minister Marlene Malahoo Forte, in her sectoral presentation in Parliament, promised to establish the Constitutional Reform Committee (CRC). The Minister also promised to “keep everyone up to date on all progress made.” To date, NOTHING!
TIME COME!!! The loud cry of the Jamaican people, more strongly amplified internationally since the death of the Queen, is to finally remove the monarch as Head of State. The AN calls on the government to immediately provide a timeline for:
1. Establishing the CRC and informing the public how they will be involved in reforming the Constitution;
2. Starting a public education process to inform Jamaicans about the process of becoming a Republic, including the importance of constitutional reform; and
3. Tabling the required legislative bill in Parliament to ensure the removal of the King as Head of State by Jamaica’s 61st celebration of independence on or before August 6, 2023.
The AN urges the government to ACT NOW! It has been more than 27 years since the Joint Select Committee on Constitutional and Electoral Reform agreed to remove the Monarch as Head of State.
The AN will continue its collaboration with the Jamaica Accountability Meter Portal (JAMP), the National Integrity Action (NIA), and the Institute of Law & Economics (ILE) in building public awareness through the series of public discussion Forums entitled ‘Our Jamaican Republic’. Our next Forum, entitled: ‘King Charles III – Change! NOT continuity for Jamaica’, will be held in October 2022.