Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Independent poll suggests Belize is in favor of maintaining ties with the British Monarchy


King Charles III

On Saturday, May 6th, the official coronation of King Charles III will take place in London, England. Charles assumed the position as the head of the British Monarchy following his mother’s death in September 2022. With this change, King Charles became the head of state in most of the Commonwealth countries, including Belize. However, some of these countries are considering cutting ties with the British monarchy, and according to a recent survey conducted by Lord Michael Ashcroft Polls, Belize would keep the Brit as head of state.
While the poll suggests such results, speaking with Belizeans in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, the answers are mixed. Many people said that the country is not ready to become a republic and that Belize should maintain ties with the British crown. Several persons touched on the national security issue as it is believed that the United Kingdom monarchy has some responsibility to support Belize in case of military confrontation with another country, particularly Guatemala, which maintains a claim over the country. Others said that keeping King Charles III as head of state is good for the country’s political stability, and if the country still wants to move away from a constitutional monarchy, the government should wait and plan a feasible process.
Meanwhile, some residents believe it is time to move away from the monarchy and become more independent. The other reason shared is that the British crown does not do much for Belize; thus, they see no benefit in keeping the ceremonial posts. A few were unsure what would be best and abstained from commenting on the topic.
According to the Lord Ashcroft poll, 48% of Belizeans agree to maintain ties with the monarchy, while 43% prefer the country to become a republic. In other Caribbean Commonwealth countries, Grenada showed 56% to 42%, St. Kitts and Nevis 52% to 45%, St. Lucia 56% to 39%, and St. Vincent and The Grenadines 63% to 34% were in favor of remaining a constitutional monarchy.
Antigua 47% to 45%, The Bahamas 51% to 27%, and Jamaica 49% to 40% all leaned toward becoming a
republic rather than keeping ties with the monarchy. In these countries, the opinion was that becoming a republic would bring more practical benefits and the monarchy was wrong in principle and should be replaced. Other countries like Jamaica and St. Kitts said the British Monarchy had been good for their country in the past, but it makes no sense today.
The poll added that most participants had a positive view of King Charles, except in The Bahamas. Although some of the Caribbean countries have shown interest in becoming a republic, they would also want to remain part of the Commonwealth.
The poll interviewed over 4,000 adults online in Antigua and Barbuda, The Bahamas, Belize, Grenada, Jamaica, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, and St. Vincent and The Grenadines. Below is a chart showing the results of a poll in the Commonwealth.

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