HOA declines to support Malone’s proposals for constitutional review
A suite of amendments proposed by Territorial At-Large Representative Carvin Malone to be added to the terms of reference for the Constitutional Review Commission (CRC) found no favour among fellow legislators in the House of Assembly yesterday, September 21.
Malone moved a resolution in the HOA to have members adopt additional terms for the CRC that included, among other things, a determination on how the Premier of the BVI should be chosen.
Malone, in making his recommendations to be added to the CRC’s terms of reference, said most were suggestions that would be readily agreed by other members of the HOA.
Among Malone‘s list of suggestions was whether the post of Premier and Deputy Premier should be determined from the At-large candidacy instead of how it is done currently.
The At-large representative also wanted the CRC to consider whether the administration and responsibility of the civil service should be devolved to a ministry.
He also asked whether there should be consideration for a “Provision for Referendums” based on a two-third votes’ approval by the HOA and a simple majority of the voting public.
Malone also wanted to go to the CRC to decide whether a timeline should be developed for a referendum. He said this referendum would be to decide on becoming a “Unitary Sovereign Democratic State” with His Majesty the King as Head of State, in the first instance. Coupled with that suggestion was his proposal for the nomination and selection of a Virgin Islands national as Governor General.
Further, he wanted the CRC to look at whether Anegada and Jost Van Dyke should be declared as Districts 10 and 11, respectively, and elect their own representatives, thereby reducing the number of Territorial At-Large seats from four to two.
Malone also wanted the CRC to examine a recall provision for elected representatives based on two-thirds of the votes cast from more than 50 percent of the registered voters in the representative’s constituency.
Additionally, he wanted the CRC to consider whether elected members to the House of Assembly should have term limits constructed based on three consecutive terms in elected office and not be considered for elected office for a fourth consecutive term.
House Speaker, Corine George-Massicote read each of Malone’s seven suggested amendments separately but none were adopted by any HOA member for inclusion in the amended terms of reference that were being debated in the House.
Ultimately, government’s original amended terms of reference were adopted by the House.