The government of St. Lucia is a constitutional monarchy, wherein Queen Elizabeth is the head of state. The Queen is represented by a Governor General. The Prime minister is the head of the government.
The country’s parliament is bicameral and includes the Senate and the House of Assembly. The Senate has 11 members, appointed for a term of five years. Of the 11 members of Senate, six are appointed by the Governor General on the advice of the Prime Minster, three on the advice of the Leader of the Opposition and two by the Governor General. The House of Assembly has 18 members, directly elected for a term of five years.
The major political parties in the country include:
- United Workers Party (UWP)
- Saint Lucia Labour Party (SLP)
- National Alliance
- Saint Lucia Freedom Party
The country’s economic freedom score is 70.8, making it 26th freest economy in the 2011 Index of Economic Freedom. St. Lucia ranks 2nd out of 29 countries in the South and Central America/Caribbean region.
St. Lucia is not ranked in the Corruption Perception Index 2010. However, in the 2009 index, it was ranked 22nd with a score of 7, which indicates the perceived levels of corruption in the country is low.
Freedom of Information
The restriction on media in St. Lucia is limited. The media in the country are mainly private owned. In 2006, the parliament cancelled the media legislation, under which individuals were jailed for publishing false news.
The various newspapers in the country include:
- The Voice
- The Mirror
- The Star
- The Crusader
- The Vanguard
- One Caribbean
The Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) is the supreme judicial organ in the Caribbean Community and the final court of appeal for the member states in the community.
The judicial system of the country is composed of a High Court and District courts. The cases are appealed in the Eastern Caribbean Court of Appeal and are reviewed in the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council in London.
The Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (ECSC) is a superior judicial tribunal for the nine independent countries in the Eastern Caribbean. St. Lucia is one of these nine countries.
(Source: eccourts.org, stepjournal.org, caribbeancourtofjustice.org)