Changes to Cayman’s Constitution are yet to be signed off by the United Kingdom government.
But Premier Hon. Alden McLaughlin says he is hoping it will happen soon.
So far the changes have been approved by UK Overseas Territories Minister Tariq Ahmad.
However, the proposed draft order is awaiting UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s green light to move it forward.
Premier McLaughlin outlined the process during an interview with Cayman 27.
“Once the Prime Minister has signed off on it, the draft order will be sent off to Cayman. We will debate it in the House and then once there is a vote that will be communicated back to the UK and assuming that the House is in agreement with what’s being proposed the UK government, I believe, will then proceed to have the Privy Council make the order themselves and then it will be laid on the table of the House of Commons in the UK Parliament and a date will be fixed for it to come into effect,” said Premier McLaughlin.
The Premier also took issue with Bodden Town West MLA Chris Saunders approach in pushing for a referendum on the changes.
This week the MLA wrote to the UK government calling for the proposal to be put to the voters.
The Premier said he met with the Opposition, including Mr. Saunders, on the changes before it went to the UK.
He said after lengthy talks there was agreement on the proposal.
The Premier asserts that the position has changed now because the Opposition’s leadership has changed.
Mr. McLaughlin said timing is of the essence to get the changes to the Constitution finalised to limit the powers the UK has to legislate in Cayman.
“At present, we have a government that is very supportive of Cayman and with whom my government and the other Overseas Territories government have a good relationship. History has shown us that is not always the case and a step such as that taken by Mr. Saunders in trying to essentially stop this from happening or to at least delay it indeterminately, does not do Cayman any favours and in my view is a dereliction of his duty as a representative,” he said.
The Premier said the UK government is the body that ultimately decides on changes to the Constitution based on what the draft order decided by the LA.
He said, therefore, the UK government said there is no need for a referendum on the changes.