Fraser says constitution review should have been further along
While making a plea recently for persons to get involved in the current ongoing process of constitutional reform, Opposition Leader Julian Fraser said he felt the process could have advanced much further had it not been for setbacks.
“One of the catalysts for me to get involved in politics, for this administration, was to deal with this Constitutional Review and to encourage the Premier to advance it and which I did, had it not been for obstacles in our way, we would have been much further on,” Fraser told reporters at a recent press conference for the launch of the review process.
Fraser did not specify which obstacles interrupted the process but said his involvement was intentional, especially after noticing that there had been no review done at the 10-year mark following the 2007 constitution.
“I’m sure that by the time this administration’s term was up, this House of Assembly was concluded, we should have been in negotiations,” the veteran legislator added. “So, I am committed to seeing this review completed. I am committed to whatever I can do to seeing the advancement of towards negotiations and all the rest of it.
In the meantime, Fraser encouraged commissioners to consider this particular review as if it was the last one and encouraged them to stretch the envelope and to be bold in the measures they adopt given that they had the support of the Opposition Leader as well as the Premier.
Fraser also suggested that there is some level of solace in the terms of reference which asks commissioners to make recommendations for constitutional reform by considering a mechanism for the transfer of reserve powers to the devolved Virgin Islands government in the future, without a further change to the constitution being required.