The Bahamas Independence Order 1973

Link to law: http://laws.bahamas.gov.bs/cms/images/LEGISLATION/SUBORDINATE/1973/1973-1080/TheBahamasIndependenceOrder1973_1.pdf
Published: 1973-07-10

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THE BAHAMAS INDEPENDENCE
ORDER, 1973

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[Original Service 2001] STATUTE LAW OF THE BAHAMAS

THE CONSTITUTION


THE BAHAMAS INDEPENDENCE ORDER 1973


1973 No. 1080


CARIBBEAN AND NORTH ATLANTIC
TERRITORIES

The Bahamas Independence Order 1973


Made - 20th June, 1973
Laid before Parliament - 26th June, 1973
Coming into Operation - 10th July, 1973


At the Court of Windsor Castle, the 20th day of June 1973
Present,

The Queen's Most Excellent Majesty in Council
Her Majesty, by virtue and in exercise of the powers

vested in Her by section 1 of the Bahama Islands
(Constitution) Act 19631 and of all other powers enabling
Her in that behalf, is pleased, by and with the advice of Her
Privy Council, to order, and it is hereby ordered, as
follows:

1. (1) This Order may be cited as The Bahamas
Independence Order 1973.

(2) Subject to the provisions of the next following
subsection this Order shall come into operation on 10th
July 1973 (in this Order referred to as "the appointed day").

(3) The Governor and Commander-in-Chief of the
Bahama Islands may at any time after 20th June 1973
exercise any powers conferred on the Governor-General by
section 4(3) of this Order or Article 39(4) of the
Constitution set out in the Schedule to this Order (in this
Order referred to as "the Constitution") to such an extent as
may be necessary or expedient to enable the Constitution to
function as from the appointed day.

(4)(a) For the purposes of the exercise by the
Governor under subsection (3) of this section of the powers
conferred by section 4(3) of this Order the Governor shall
act in accordance with the advice of the Prime Minister.

1 1963 c. 56

Citation,
commencement
and construction.

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(b) For the purposes of the exercise by the Governor
under the said subsection of the powers conferred by
Article 39(4) of the Constitution the Governor shall act in
accordance with the advice of the Prime Minister after
consultation with the Leader of the Opposition.

(c) For the purposes of this subsection references to
the Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition shall be
construed as references to the persons performing the
functions of those offices under the Bahama Islands
(Constitution) Order 19692 (in this Order referred to as "the
existing Order"), and in relation to the exercise by virtue of
this subsection of the powers conferred by Article 39(4) of
the Constitution the provisions of Article 40 of the
Constitution shall apply as they would apply in relation to
the exercise of those powers by virtue of Article 39(4) of
the Constitution.

(5) Save where the context otherwise requires,
expressions used in sections 1 to 17 of this Order shall
have the same meaning as in the Constitution and the
provisions of Articles 127 and 137 of the Constitution shall
apply for the purposes of interpreting those sections as they
apply for the purposes of interpreting the Constitution.

2. The existing Order is revoked; but the revocation
of the existing Order shall not affect the operation on and
after the appointed day of any law made or having effect as
if made in pursuance of the existing Order or continued in
force thereunder and having effect as part of the law of the
Bahama Islands immediately before the appointed day
(including any law made before the appointed day and
coming into operation on or after that day).

3. Subject to the provisions of this Order, the
Constitution shall come into effect on the appointed day.

4. (1) Subject to the provisions of this section, the
existing laws shall be construed with such modifications,
adaptations, qualifications and exceptions as may be
necessary to bring them into conformity with the Bahamas
Independence Act 19733 and this Order.

(2) Where any matter that falls to be prescribed or
otherwise provided for under the Constitution by
Parliament or by any other authority or person is prescribed
or provided for by or under an existing law (including any

2 S.I. 1969/590 (1969) I, p. 567
3 1973 C.27

Revocation.

Establishment of
Constitution.

Existing laws.

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amendment to any such law made under this section) or is
otherwise prescribed or provided for immediately before
the appointed day or under the existing Order, that
prescription or provision shall, as from that day, have
effect (with such modifications, adaptations, qualifications
and exceptions as may be necessary to bring it into
conformity with the Bahamas Independence Act 1973 and
this Order) as if it had been made under the Constitution by
Parliament or, as the case may require, by the other
authority or person.

(3) The Governor-General may by Order made at
any time before 10th July 1974 make such amendments to
any existing law as may appear to him to be necessary or
expedient for bringing that law into conformity with the
provisions of the Bahamas Independence Act 1973 and this
Order or otherwise for giving effect to or enabling effect to
be given to those provisions.

(4) An Order made by the Governor-General under
subsection (3) of this section shall have effect from such
day, not earlier than the appointed day, as may be specified
therein.

(5) The provisions of this section shall be without
prejudice to any powers conferred by this Order or by any
other law upon any person or authority to make provision
for any matter, including the amendment or repeal of any
existing law.

(6) In this section "existing law" means any law
having effect as part of the law of the Bahama Islands
immediately before the appointed day (including any law
made before the appointed day and coming into operation
on or after that day).

5. (1) The persons who immediately before the
appointed day are members of the Senate established by
the existing Order (in this section referred to as "the
existing Senate"), having been appointed as such under
paragraphs (a) and (b) respectively of section 30(2) of the
Schedule to the existing Order, shall as from the appointed
day be members of the Senate established by the
Constitution as if they had been appointed as such under
paragraphs (2) and (3) respectively of Article 39 of the
Constitution and shall hold their seats as Senators in
accordance with the provisions of the Constitution.

(2) The persons who immediately before the
appointed day are members of the House of Assembly then

Parliament.

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STATUTE LAW OF THE BAHAMAS [Original Service 2001]

established for the Bahama Islands (in this section referred
to as "the existing Assembly") shall as from the appointed
day be members of the House of Assembly established by
the Constitution as if elected as such in pursuance of
Article 46(2) of the Constitution and shall hold their seats
in that House in accordance with the provisions of the
Constitution.

(3) The persons who immediately before the
appointed day are Speaker and Deputy Speaker of the
existing Assembly shall as from the appointed day be
Speaker and Deputy Speaker respectively of the House of
Assembly established by the Constitution as if elected as
such by that House in pursuance of Article 50(1) of the
Constitution and shall hold office in accordance with the
provisions of that Article.

(4) Any person who is a member of the Senate or
the House of Assembly established by the Constitution by
virtue of the preceding provisions of this section and who,
since he was last appointed or elected as a member of the
existing Senate or the existing Assembly before the
appointed day, has taken the oath of allegiance in
pursuance of section 45 of the Schedule to the existing
Order shall be deemed to have complied with the
requirements of Article 64 of the Constitution relating to
the taking of the oath of allegiance.

(5) The rules of procedure of the existing Senate
and the existing Assembly as in force immediately before
the appointed day shall, except as may be otherwise
provided in pursuance of Article 55(1) of the Constitution,
be the rules of procedure respectively of the Senate and the
House of Assembly established by the Constitution, but
they shall be construed with such modifications,
adaptations, qualifications and exceptions as may be
necessary to bring them into conformity with the
Constitution.

(6) Notwithstanding anything contained in Article
66(3) of the Constitution (but subject to the provisions of
paragraphs (4) and (5) of that Article) Parliament shall,
unless sooner dissolved, stand dissolved on the expiration
of five years from the first sitting of the existing Assembly
after the general election of members of the existing
Assembly last preceding the appointed day.

(7) For the purposes of Articles 41 and 47 of the
Constitution any period of ordinary residence in the

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Bahama Islands immediately before the appointed day
shall be deemed to be residence in The Bahamas.

6. (1) The person who immediately before the
appointed day holds the office of Prime Minister under the
existing Order shall, as from the appointed day, hold office
as Prime Minister as if he had been appointed thereto under
Article 73(1) of the Constitution.

(2) The persons (other than the Prime Minister) who
immediately before the appointed day hold office as
Ministers under the existing Order shall, as from the
appointed day, hold the like offices as if they had been
appointed thereto under Article 73(2) of the Constitution.

(3) Any person holding the office of Prime Minister
or other Minister by virtue of subsection (1) or (2) of this
section who immediately before the appointed day was
charged with responsibility for any matter or department of
government shall, as from the appointed day, be deemed to
have been charged with responsibility for the
corresponding business or administration of the
corresponding department of the Government under Article
77 of the Constitution.

(4) The persons who immediately before the
appointed day hold office as Parliamentary Secretaries
under the existing Order shall, as from the appointed day,
hold the like offices, as if they had been appointed thereto
under Article 81(1) of the Constitution.

(5) Any person who holds office as Prime Minister
or other Minister or Parliamentary Secretary as from the
appointed day by virtue of the provisions of this section
shall be deemed to have complied with the requirements of
Article 84 of the Constitution relating to the taking of
oaths.

7. The person who immediately before the
appointed day is the Leader of the Opposition (as defined
for the purposes of the Schedule to the existing Order)
shall, as from the appointed day, hold office as Leader of
the Opposition as if he had been appointed thereto under
Article 82 of the Constitution.

8. Subject to the provisions of this Order and of the
Constitution, every person who immediately before the
commencement of this Order holds or is acting in a public
office shall, as from the commencement of this Order,
continue to hold or act in the like office as if he had been

Ministers and
Parliamentary
Secretaries.

Leader of the
Opposition.

Existing officers.

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STATUTE LAW OF THE BAHAMAS [Original Service 2001]

appointed thereto in accordance with the provisions of the
Constitution.

9. (1) The Supreme Court and the Court of Appeal
in existence immediately before the appointed day shall, as
from the appointed day, be the Supreme Court and the
Court of Appeal for the purposes of the Constitution and
the Chief Justice and the Judges of the Supreme Court and
the President of the Court of Appeal and the Justices of
Appeal holding office immediately before that day shall, as
from that day, hold offices as Chief Justice or Justices of
the Supreme Court or President of the Court of Appeal or
Justices of Appeal, as the case may be, as if they had been
appointed under the provisions of Chapter VII of the
Constitution.

(2) Any proceedings pending before the Supreme
Court immediately before the appointed day may be
continued and any judgment of that Court given but not
satisfied before that day may be enforced as if it were the
judgment of the Supreme Court established by the
Constitution.

10. (1) Any proceedings pending immediately
before the appointed day on appeal from the Supreme
Court to the Court of Appeal for the Bahama Islands may
be continued after the appointed day before the Court of
Appeal for The Bahamas established by the Constitution.

(2) Any judgment of the Court of Appeal for the
Bahama Islands in an appeal from a court of the Colony of
the Bahama Islands given, but not satisfied, before the
appointed day may be enforced after the appointed day as
if it were a judgment of the Court of Appeal for The
Bahamas established by the Constitution.

11. A court of appeal for Turks and Caicos Islands
may, under arrangements between the Government of that
territory and the Government of The Bahamas, sit in The
Bahamas and exercise there such jurisdiction and powers
in respect of the Turks and Caicos Islands as may be
conferred upon it by any law for the time being in force in
the Turks and Caicos Islands. Without prejudice to the
generality of the foregoing, persons committed to custody
in the Turks and Caicos Islands when present in The
Bahamas in connection with any proceedings in a court of
appeal for the Turks and Caicos Islands may be held in
custody in The Bahamas and persons may be committed to
custody in The Bahamas by order of such a court.

Supreme Court
and Court of
Appeal Judges.

Pending appeals.

Exercise of
jurisdiction by
Court of Appeal
for Turks and
Caicos Islands.

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12. Until provision is made under and in accordance
with Article 135 of the Constitution, the salaries and
allowances of the holders of each of the offices to which
that Article applies, other than the Governor-General, shall
be the salaries and allowances to which the holders of each
of those offices or of the offices corresponding thereto
were entitled immediately before the appointed day, and
the salary and allowances of the Governor-General shall be
the salary and allowances to which the Governor and
Commander-in-Chief of the Bahama Islands was entitled
immediately before such day.

13. (1) Any power of the Governor and
Commander-in-Chief of the Bahama Islands acting on the
recommendation of the Public Service Commission
established by the existing Order which has been validly
delegated to any public officer under that Order shall, as
from the appointed day, be deemed to have been delegated
to that public officer to the extent that that power could be
so delegated under Article 110 of the Constitution.

(2) Any matter which, immediately before the
appointed day, is pending before an existing Commission
or, as the case may be, before any person or authority on
whom the power to deal with such matter has been
conferred under the existing Order shall as from the
appointed day be continued before the Public Service
Commission established by the Constitution, or the Public
Service Board of Appeal, or the Judicial and Legal Service
Commission, or the Police Service Commission, so
established or, as the case may be, the said person or
authority:

Provided that where an existing Commission or, as
the case may be, any person or authority as aforesaid has,
immediately before the appointed day, partly completed
the hearing of a disciplinary proceeding (in this section
referred to as "the original hearing"), no person shall take
part in the continued hearing unless he has also taken part
in the original hearing; and where by virtue of this
subsection the original hearing cannot be so continued the
hearing of the disciplinary proceeding shall be
recommended.

(3) A person who immediately before the appointed
day holds the office of Chairman or other member of an
existing Commission shall, as from the appointed day,
continue to hold the like office as if he had been appointed
thereto in accordance with the provisions of the

Remuneration of
certain persons.

Transitional
provisions
relating to
existing
Commissions.

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STATUTE LAW OF THE BAHAMAS [Original Service 2001]

Constitution and shall be deemed to have been duly
appointed to such office under the Constitution.

(4) The provisions of Articles 107(3), 114(3),
116(3) or 118(3), as the case may be, of the Constitution
shall have effect in relation to such a person as if the date
of his appointment under the existing Order were the date
of his appointment under the Constitution.

(5) Until Parliament otherwise prescribes under
Article 117(2) of the Constitution the public offices to
which Article 117(1) thereof applies shall be the offices of
Solicitor-General, Registrar of the Supreme Court, Legal
Draftsman, Senior Crown Counsel, Chief Magistrate,
Registrar-General, Stipendiary and Circuit Magistrate,
Crown Counsel, Assistant Legal Draftsman, Assistant
Registrar, Deputy Registrar General and Assistant Crown
Counsel.

(6) In this section "an existing Commission" means
the Public Service Commission, established under the
existing Order or, as the case may be, the Public Service
Board of Appeal, or the Judicial and Legal Service
Commission, or the Police Service Commission, so
established.

14. (1) The Emergency Powers Order in Council
19394 and any Order in Council amending that Order5 shall
cease to have effect as part of the law of The Bahamas on
10th July 1974 or such earlier date as Parliament may
prescribe.

(2) Until such time as the said Orders cease to have
effect under subsection (1) of this section they shall
continue to have effect in respect of The Bahamas as they
had effect in respect of the former Colony of the Bahama
Islands immediately before the appointed day, except that
the powers exercisable by the Governor thereunder shall be
exercisable by the Governor-General acting in accordance
with the advice of the Prime Minister.

15. All sums standing to the credit of the Crown
Lands Fund for Development immediately before the
appointed day shall as from that day form part of the
Consolidated Fund, and all sums charged on the Crown
Lands Fund for Development immediately before that day

4 See S.I. 1952 I at p. 621.
5 The relevant amending instruments are S.I. 1956/731, 1963/88, 1633, 1964/267, 1199,
1965/131, 1968/724, 1973/759 (1956 I, p. 512; 1963 I, p. 105; III, p. 3084; 1964 I, p.
467, ll, p. 2781; 1965 I, p. 270; 1968 II, p. 2077; 1973 I, p. 2417).

Emergency
Powers Order in
Council 1939.

Transfer of
Crown Lands
Fund for
Development to
Consolidated
Fund.

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shall as from that day stand charged on the Consolidated
Fund.

16. Any compensation, gratuity, grant or allowance
paid or payable, whether before or after the appointed day,
under any regulations made by the Governor under section
15 of the Bahama Islands (Constitution) Order in Council
19636 or under section 9 of the Bahama Islands
(Constitution) Order 1969, which under those regulations
as in force immediately prior to the appointed day was or
would have been exempt from tax in the Bahama Islands,
shall be exempt from tax to the same extent in the Bahamas
after the appointed day.

17. (1) Parliament may alter any of the provisions of
this Order (in so far as those provisions form part of the
law of The Bahamas), other than those mentioned in
subsections (2) and (3) of this section, in the same manner
as it may alter the provisions of the Constitution other than
those specified in paragraphs (2) and (3) of Article 54 of
the Constitution.

(2) Parliament may alter subsection (6) of section 5
of this Order and this section in the same manner as it may
alter the provisions specified in Article 54(3) of the
Constitution.

(3) Parliament may alter sections 8, 9, 12,
subsections (3), (4) and (5) of section 13 and section 16 of
this Order in the same manner as it may alter the provisions
specified in Article 54(2) of the Constitution.

(4) In this section "alter" has the same meaning as
in Article 54(4)(b) of the Constitution.




6 S.I. 1963/2084 (1963 III, P. 4403).

Transitional
provisions
relating to
compensation
etc.

Alteration of this
Order.
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