Turks and Caicos Islands: Constitution might change dual citizenship election rule for Turks and Caicos Islanders | fptci.com

A little noticed change proposed for the 2006 Constitution would make Turks and Caicos Islanders holding dual citizenship eligible for election to the House of Assembly if they renounce their citizenship in another country before nomination.

Section 47(1) of the 2006 Constitution — which is currently suspended — states, “No person shall be qualified to be a member of the House of Assembly who is, by virtue of his or her own act, under any acknowledgement of allegiance, obedience or adherence to any foreign power or state.”

That section means that anyone who has ever sought a passport or sought and received citizenship elsewhere cannot run for the House, according to the Attorney General’s office.

A number of TCI Belongers were born in other countries such as the United States or the Bahamas, making them citizens in the country of their births. But that alone doesn’t disqualify a person from seeking a House seat.

“If that person’s parents had obtained a passport from the foreign state for the person while he/she was still a minor, there would be no disqualification unless the minor had, once he/she became an adult, renewed that passport,” the Attorney General’s office told the fp.

“What (Section 47) means is that a person with dual citizenship cannot be a member of the House of Assembly if he or she has applied for a passport from the country outside the TCI of which he or she is also a citizen. Applying for a passport would be an act by that person that acknowledged ‘allegiance, obedience or adherence’ to a foreign power or state.”

New language proposed for Section 47 (1) says the requirement only applies “on the date of his or her nomination for election.” That means a person can run for the House if he or she renounces citizenship in the other country before nomination, according to the Attorney General.

Full Article: Constitution might change dual citizenship election rule.

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