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Montserrat Government Profile

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Country name
conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Montserrat
etymology: island named by explorer Christopher COLUMBUS in 1493 after the Benedictine abbey Santa Maria de Montserrat, near Barcelona, Spain
Dependency status
overseas territory of the UK
Government type
parliamentary democracy; self-governing overseas territory of the UK
Capital
name: Plymouth; note - Plymouth was abandoned in 1997 because of volcanic activity; interim government buildings have been built at Brades Estate, the de facto capital, in the Carr's Bay/Little Bay vicinity at the northwest end of Montserrat
geographic coordinates: 16 42 N, 62 13 W
time difference: UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
etymology and note: now entirely deserted because of volcanic activity, the city was originally named after Plymouth, England; de jure, Plymouth remains the capital city of Montserrat; it is therefore the only ghost town that serves as the capital of a political entity
Administrative divisions
3 parishes; Saint Anthony, Saint Georges, Saint Peter
Independence
none (overseas territory of the UK)
National holiday
Birthday of Queen ELIZABETH II, usually celebrated the Monday after the second Saturday in June (1926)
Constitution
history: previous 1960; latest effective 1 September 2010 (The Montserrat Constitution Order 2010)
amendments: amended 2011
Legal system
Citizenship
see United Kingdom
Suffrage
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch
chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952); represented by Governor Andrew PEARCE (since 1 February 2018)
head of government: Premier Easton TAYLOR-FARRELL (since 19 November 2019); note - effective with The Constitution Order 2010, effective October 2010, the office of premier replaced the office of chief minister
cabinet: Executive Council consists of the governor, the premier, 3 other ministers, the attorney general, and the finance secretary
elections/appointments: the monarchy is hereditary; governor appointed by the monarch; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party usually becomes premier
Legislative branch
description: unicameral Legislative Assembly (11 seats; 9 members directly elected in a single constituency by absolute majority vote in 2 rounds to serve 5-year terms and 2 ex-officio members - the attorney general and financial secretary)
elections: last held on 18 November 2019 (next scheduled for 2024)
election results: percent of vote by party - MCAP 42.7%, PDM 29.9%, other 17.1%; seats by party - MCAP 5, PDM 3, independent 1
Judicial branch
highest courts: the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (ECSC) is the superior court of the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States; the ECSC - headquartered on St. Lucia - consists of the Court of Appeal - headed by the chief justice and 4 judges - and the High Court with 18 judges; the Court of Appeal is itinerant, traveling to member states on a schedule to hear appeals from the High Court and subordinate courts; High Court judges reside in the member states, with 1 assigned to Montserrat; Montserrat is also a member of the Caribbean Court of Justice
judge selection and term of office: chief justice of Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court appointed by the Her Majesty, Queen ELIZABETH II; other justices and judges appointed by the Judicial and Legal Services Commission, and independent body of judicial officials; Court of Appeal justices appointed for life with mandatory retirement at age 65; High Court judges appointed for life with mandatory retirement at age 62
subordinate courts: magistrate's court
Political parties and leaders
Movement for Change and Prosperity or MCAP [Easton Taylor FARRELL]
People's Democratic Movement or PDM [Donaldson ROMERO]
International organization participation
Caricom, CDB, Interpol (subbureau), OECS, UPU
Diplomatic representation in the US
none (overseas territory of the UK)
Diplomatic representation from the US
embassy: none (overseas territory of the UK); alternate contact is the US Embassy in Barbados [1] (246) 227-4000; US Embassy in Bridgetown, Wildey Business Park, St. Michael BB 14006, Barbados, WI
Flag description
blue with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant and the Montserratian coat of arms centered in the outer half of the flag; the arms feature a woman in green dress, Erin, the female personification of Ireland, standing beside a yellow harp and embracing a large dark cross with her right arm; Erin and the harp are symbols of Ireland reflecting the territory's Irish ancestry; blue represents awareness, trustworthiness, determination, and righteousness
National anthem

note: as a territory of the UK, "God Save the Queen" is official (see United Kingdom)


Source: CIA World Factbook
This page was last updated on Friday, November 27, 2020