Constitution left to Governor

The Cayman Islands Constitution Order (2009) was laid before the United Kingdom Parliament this week, marking the last formal step to be taken in London before the document becomes the new law of the land.

Now, it’s up to Governor Stuart Jack.

Mr. Jack must nominate the ‘appointed day’ for Cayman, the date at which the new constitution comes into effect. He has said that day is likely to be several months down the line as preparation for both the change in laws and government authorities will require time and effort.

Most parts of the constitution will take immediate effect following the arrival of the appointed day, but there are a few exceptions.

The bill of rights will not come into effect until three years after the appointed day. Certain provisions relating to the treatment of prisoners under the bill of rights will not take effect until four years after the appointed day.

The governor is instructed to appoint an Electoral Boundary Commission ‘as soon as is practicable’ after the appointed day. The commission will consider where three new elected Legislative Assembly offices will be created within Cayman’s current governing districts.

The LA will continue to operate with its current 15 elected members until the first election after the boundary commission completes its work. Then the number of elected members in the house will increase to 18.

Until the Judicial and Legal Services Commission has been formed, the Governor will still maintain the power to appoint judges. Until the appointment of the director of public prosecutions, the attorney general will continue to serve in his role as chief prosecutor.