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Government gives serious thought to allowing overseas nationals' vote

Published:Tuesday | June 16, 2015 | 7:56 AM

The Government has indicated it is giving serious thought to the issue of allowing Jamaicans in the diaspora to vote in local elections.

The indication came from Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator A.J. Nicholson while speaking at the 6th Biennial Jamaica Diaspora Conference on Sunday.

Senator Nicholson says the matter of allowing overseas nationals to participate in the country’s electoral process will be discussed at length, so that the best arrangement can be put in place.

He says the matter has been included in the draft national Diaspora policy aimed at enhancing Jamaica’s social and economic development.

And he says the document is ready to be taken to the Cabinet for deliberation.

Senator Nicholson said it is anticipated that the national Diaspora policy will have bipartisan support, and will deepen engagement between Jamaica and its Diaspora.

The issue of members of the diaspora voting was recently discussed by opposition Leader Andrew Holness who urged the Portia Simpson Miller-led administration to explore ways to give Jamaicans overseas the opportunity to vote in Jamaica.

He suggested that they be to allowed to vote as a constituency:

 

Opposition Leader, Andrew Holness