Turks and Caicos Islands: Local and British politicians concerned about Turks and Caicos democracy | Caribbean News Now

The timing of elections in the Turks and Caicos Islands (TCI) and the milestones that have to be met before such elections can be held has resulted in questions, opinions and concerns being aired by politicians on both sides of the Atlantic.

Direct rule was imposed on the TCI almost two years ago in August 2009. One year earlier, current Governor Gordon Wetherell arrived and began immediately to introduce restraints on the then elected government of the Progressive National Party (PNP).

Turks and Caicos Islands: Elections Next Year Doubtful | Turks and Caicos SUN Newspaper

There appears to be great doubt about whether elections that will return the Turks and Caicos Islands to self-rule, will be held next year. While officials from the United Kingdom keep saying in broad and general terms that it is their intention to hold elections in 2012, they have so far refused to give a date and have been expressing concerns about the milestones that have to be met before voters go the poll.

It was widely expected that when Hon. Henry Bellingham, Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, visited the Turks and Caicos Islands on Thursday July 14, that he would made a major announcement such as releasing the date for elections. However, when pressed by The SUN to give a date, he refused. He said the Constitution has been passed, and that was a major milestone, but he is not prepared to say categorically that all of the work will be completed in time for elections.