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About Antigua and Barbuda
~ Government

Country name

conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Antigua and Barbuda

Government type

constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary system of government and a Commonwealth realm

Capital

name: Saint John's
geographic coordinates: 17 07 N, 61 51 W
time difference: UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)

Administrative divisions

6 parishes and 2 dependencies*; Barbuda*, Redonda*, Saint George, Saint John, Saint Mary, Saint Paul, Saint Peter, Saint Philip

Independence

1 November 1981 (from the UK)

National holiday

Independence Day (National Day), 1 November (1981)

Constitution

1 November 1981

Legal system

based on English common law

Suffrage

18 years of age; universal

Executive branch

chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952); represented by Governor General Louisse LAKE-TACK (since 17 July 2007)
head of government: Prime Minister Winston Baldwin SPENCER (since 24 March 2004)
cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the governor general on the advice of the prime minister
elections: the monarch is hereditary; governor general chosen by the monarch on the advice of the prime minister; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of the majority coalition is usually appointed prime minister by the governor general

Legislative branch

bicameral Parliament consists of the Senate (17 seats; members appointed by the governor general) and the House of Representatives (17 seats; members are elected by proportional representation to serve five-year terms)
elections: House of Representatives - last held 12 March 2009 (next to be held in 2014)
election results: percent of vote by party - UPP 50.9%, ALP 47.2%, BPM 1.1%; seats by party - UPP 9, ALP 7, BPM 1

Judicial branch

Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court consisting of a High Court of Justice and a Court of Appeal (based in Saint Lucia; two judges of the Supreme Court are residents of the islands and preside over the Court of Summary Jurisdiction); Magistrates' Courts; member of the Caribbean Court of Justice

Political parties and leaders

Antigua Labor Party or ALP [Lester Bryant BIRD]; Barbudans for a Better Barbuda [Ordrick SAMUEL]; Barbuda People's Movement or BPM [Thomas H. FRANK]; Barbuda People's Movement for Change [Arthur NIBBS]; United Progressive Party or UPP [Baldwin SPENCER] (a coalition of three parties - Antigua Caribbean Liberation Movement or ACLM, Progressive Labor Movement or PLM, United National Democratic Party or UNDP)

Political pressure groups and leaders

Antigua Trades and Labor Union or ATLU [William ROBINSON]; People's Democratic Movement or PDM [Hugh MARSHALL]

International organization participation

ACP, C, Caricom, CDB, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, ISO (subscriber), ITU, ITUC, MIGA, NAM, OAS, OECS, OPANAL, OPCW, PetroCaribe, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US

chief of mission: Ambassador Deborah Mae LOVELL
chancery: 3216 New Mexico Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20016
telephone: [1] (202) 362-5122
FAX: [1] (202) 362-5225
consulate(s) general: Miami, New York

Diplomatic representation from the US

the US does not have an embassy in Antigua and Barbuda; the US Ambassador to Barbados is accredited to Antigua and Barbuda

Flag

Antigua and Barbuda Flag

red, with an inverted isosceles triangle based on the top edge of the flag; the triangle contains three horizontal bands of black (top), light blue, and white, with a yellow rising sun in the black band; the sun symbolizes the dawn of a new era, black represents the African heritage of most of the population, blue is for hope, and red is for the dynamism of the people; the "V" stands for victory; the successive yellow, blue, and white coloring is also meant to evoke the country's tourist attractions of sun, sea, and sand

 

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