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Government in St Lucia
 
 
 

General

Politics of St Lucia takes place in the framework of an independent parliamentary democratic Commonwealth realm with Queen Elizabeth II as its head of state, represented by a governor general, who acts on the advice of the prime minister and the cabinet. The prime minister is the leader of the majority party of the house, and the cabinet conducts affairs of state. The governor general exercises basically ceremonial functions, but residual powers, under the constitution, can be used at the governor general's discretion. The actual power in St Lucia lies with the prime minister and the cabinet, usually representing the majority party in parliament.

The legislature has two chambers. The House of Assembly has 17 members, elected by universal adult suffrage for a five year term in single-seat constituencies. The Senate has 11 members appointed by the governor general. The parliament may be dissolved by the governor general at any point during its 5-year term, either at the request of the prime minister – in order to take the nation into early elections – or at the governor general's own discretion, if the house passes a vote of no-confidence in the government.

St Lucia has an independent judiciary composed of district courts and a high court. Cases may be appealed to the Eastern Caribbean Court of Appeals and, ultimately, to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council in London.

The island is divided into 11 administrative divisions, including the capital, Castries. Popularly elected local governments in most towns and villages perform such tasks as regulation of sanitation and markets and maintenance of cemeteries and secondary roads.

Overview

Country name : conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Saint Lucia
Government type : parliamentary democracy and a Commonwealth realm
Capital

: name: Castries
geographic coordinates: 14 01 N, 61 00 W
time difference: UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions : 11 quarters; Anse-la-Raye, Castries, Choiseul, Dauphin, Dennery, Gros-Islet, Laborie, Micoud, Praslin, Soufriere, Vieux-Fort
Independence : 22 February 1979 (from the UK)
National holiday : Independence Day, 22 February (1979)
Constitution : 02/22/79
Legal system
: based on English common law; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
Suffrage : 18 years of age; universal
Executive branch
: chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952); represented by Governor General Dame Pearlette LOUISY (since September 1997)
head of government: Prime Minister Stephenson KING (since 9 September 2007); note - Sir John COMPTON died in office 7 September 2007
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the governor general on the advice of the prime minister
elections: the monarchy is hereditary; the governor general appointed by the monarch; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of a majority coalition usually appointed prime minister by the governor general; deputy prime minister appointed by the governor general
Legislative branch

: bicameral Parliament consists of the Senate (11 seats; six members appointed on the advice of the prime minister, three on the advice of the leader of the opposition, and two after consultation with religious, economic, and social groups) and the House of Assembly (17 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)
elections: House of Assembly - last held on 11 December 2006 (next to be held in December 2011)
election results: House of Assembly - percent of vote by party - UWP 50%, SLP 46.9%, other 3.1%; seats by party - UWP 11, SLP 6
Judicial branch : Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (consists of a High Court and a Court of Appeals; based on Saint Lucia; three judges of the Supreme Court reside in Saint Lucia); member of the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ)
Political parties and leaders

: National Alliance or NA [George ODLUM]; Saint Lucia Freedom Party or SFP [Martinus FRANCOIS]; Saint Lucia Labor Party or SLP [Kenneth ANTHONY]; Sou Tout Apwe Fete Fini or STAFF [Christopher HUNTE]; United Workers Party or UWP [Stephenson KING]
Political pressure groups and leaders
: NA
International organisation participation
: ACP, AOSIS, C, Caricom, CDB, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt (signatory), ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, ISO, ITU, ITUC, MIGA, NAM, OAS, OECS, OIF, OPANAL, OPCW, PetroCaribe, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
Diplomatic representation in the US
: chief of mission: Ambassador Michael LOUIS
chancery: 3216 New Mexico Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20016
telephone: [1] (202) 364-6792 through 6795
fax: [1] (202) 364-6723
consulate(s) general: Miami, New York
Diplomatic representation from the US
: the US does not have an embassy in Saint Lucia; the US Ambassador to Barbados is accredited to Saint Lucia
Flag description : blue, with a gold isosceles triangle below a black arrowhead; the upper edges of the arrowhead have a white border; the blue colour represents the sky and sea, gold stands for sunshine and prosperity, and white and black the racial composition of the island (with the latter being dominant); the two major triangles invoke the twin Pitons (Gros Piton and Petit Piton), cone-shaped volcanic plugs that are a symbol of the island
 

 
 

 



 


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