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Jamaica loves the Queen but “it’s time to move on” and become a republic

Sunday, January 8th 2012 - 05:27 UTC
Full article 23 comments
Buckingham Palace said it’s entirely a matter for the Jamaican government and people Buckingham Palace said it’s entirely a matter for the Jamaican government and people

Jamaica's new Prime Minister, Portia Simpson Miller, has said she intends to make the island a republic, removing Queen Elizabeth as the head of state. In her inaugural address, Ms Simpson Miller said the time had come for Jamaica to break with the British monarchy and have its own president.

The announcement comes ahead of celebrations to mark 50 years of Jamaican independence from Britain. The Queen's grandson, Prince Harry, is due to the visit the island this year.

“I love the Queen, she is a beautiful lady, and apart from being a beautiful lady she is a wise lady and a wonderful lady,” Ms Simpson Miller said after swearing the oath of office. “But I think time come”.

“As we celebrate our achievements as an independent nation, we now need to complete the circle of independence,” the prime minister added.

In response, a Buckingham Palace spokesman said “the issue of the Jamaican head of state was entirely a matter for the Jamaican government and people”.

Ms Simpson Miller, 66, became prime minister for the second time after her People's National Party won a big election victory on 29 December. Her inaugural address mostly focused on her plans to revive Jamaica's economy.

The Caribbean island has widespread poverty, high unemployment and huge debts.

Ms Simpson Miller is not the first Jamaican leader to promise to move towards a republic. In the early 1990s, then-Prime Minister PJ Patterson also said it was time for the island to have its own head of state, and set 2007 as the deadline.




Top Comments

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  • Lord Ton

    And Carlos Menem promised that the Falklands would belong to Argentina by the year 2000.

    Sometimes it's better just to get it done, rather than talk about it!

    Jan 08th, 2012 - 06:40 am 0
  • ElaineB

    Absolutely it is a matter for the people of Jamaica to decide.

    Jan 08th, 2012 - 10:24 am 0
  • geo

    the starting of the end for UK theatre....!!

    Jan 08th, 2012 - 11:10 am 0
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