Antigua and Barbuda plans referendum to become republic | Politics News


Whereas the nation of islands gained independence in 1981, it nonetheless holds the UK monarch as its head of state.

Antigua and Barbuda plans to resolve on whether or not to change into a republic throughout the subsequent three years, the Caribbean nation’s prime minister has stated, in a transfer that may see Britain’s new King Charles III eliminated as its head of state.

“It is a matter that needs to be taken to a referendum … throughout the subsequent, in all probability, three years,” Prime Minister Gaston Browne informed ITV Information on Saturday shortly after a neighborhood ceremony confirmed Charles III because the nation’s king following Queen Elizabeth II’s demise.

The 100,000-member nation gained independence from Britain in 1981, however is likely one of the 15 nations a part of the Commonwealth – a political affiliation that features largely former territories of the British empire – that also share the UK’s monarch as their head of state.

Brown stated changing into a republic was “a last step to finish the circle of independence to make sure we’re really a sovereign nation”, however pressured a referendum was “not an act of hostility” and wouldn’t contain retiring Commonwealth membership.

Browne’s pledge comes amid a rising republican push throughout the Caribbean area, with Barbados voting to remove the UK monarchy final yr, and the ruling social gathering in Jamaica having signalled it could observe.

Nonetheless, Browne – who’s up for re-election subsequent yr – stated he was not responding to a widespread push from Antiguans to carry a vote.

“I feel most individuals haven’t even bothered to consider it,” he informed ITV.

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