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The Bahamas is an independent country and a member of the Commonwealth of Nations. The political and legal traditions of the Bahamas closely follow those of the United Kingdom.

Queen Elizabeth II of England is the ceremonial head of state, represented by a Bahamanian governor-general. The Prime Minister is the head of government and is the leader of the party with the most seats in the elected House of Assembly. The upper house (the Senate) is appointed. Executive power is exercised by the cabinet. Legislative power is vested in both the government and the two chambers of parliament.

Constitutional safeguards include freedom of speech, press, worship, movement, and association. Although the Bahamas is not geographically located in the Caribbean, it is a member of the Caribbean Community. The judiciary is independent of the executive and the legislature, and is based on English common law.



Updated: 29 February 2008


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