Fast Facts -Government

Government type: parliamentary democracy

National capital: Kingston

Administrative divisions: 14 parishes; Clarendon, Hanover, Kingston, Manchester, Portland, Saint Andrew, Saint Ann, Saint Catherine, Saint Elizabeth, Saint James, Saint Mary, Saint Thomas, Trelawny, Westmoreland

Independence: 6 August 1962 (from UK)

National holiday: Independence Day (August 6, 1962)

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 of the UK (since 6 February 1952), represented by Governor General: Prof. Kenneth Hall (since since February 16, 2006)
Head of government: Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller (since March 30, 2006)

Cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the governor general on the advice of the prime minister
Elections: none; the queen is a hereditary monarch; governor general appointed by the queen on the recommendation of the prime minister; prime minister and deputy prime minister appointed by the governor general

Legislative branch: bicameral Parliament consists of the Senate (a 21-member body appointed by the governor general on the recommendations of the prime minister and the leader of the opposition; ruling party 13 seats, opposition 8 seats) and the House of Representatives (60 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)
Elections: last held October 16, 2002 (next to be held by October 2007)

Eelection results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - PNP 35, JLP 25;

Judicial branch: Supreme Court, judges appointed by the governor general on advice of the prime minister

Political parties and leaders: People's National Party (PNP), Portia Simpson Miller; Jamaica Labor Party (JLP), Bruce Golding; National Democratic Movement (NDM)

Political pressure groups and leaders: Rastafarians (black religious/racial cultists, pan-Africanists); New Beginnings Movement (NBM)

International organization participation: ACP, C, Caricom, CCC, CDB, ECLAC, FAO, G-15, G-19, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO (pending member), ILO, IMF, IMO, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, ISO, ITU, LAES, NAM, OAS, OPANAL, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNITAR, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO


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