Immigration Bill on its way to Parliament

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ST JOHN’S, Antigua – It is the government’s intent to take to Parliament a draft of the new Immigration Bill which will give legal effect to changes which were made to the immigration legislation some time ago.

According to National Security Minister Dr Errol Cort, changes were made to the immigration policy in Antigua & Barbuda following a report that was submitted by a three-member committee.

The committee was set up shortly after the 2009 General Elections to consult with the public on matters pertaining to immigration, work permits, citizenship and electoral reform.

“I am hoping optimistically that we will be able to take to Parliament, within the next two months, at least a new Immigration Bill that will give legal effect to all of those things we have been talking about and agreed to in terms of the consultations we have had,” Dr Cort said in an interview with OBSERVER Media.

The minister said though there were some administrative challenges, the ministry is well under way to completing this process.

Some of the changes outlined in the report are already in effect. The national security minister, however, pointed out that the others required legislative amendments or enactments in order to have legal effect.

The detailed report, authored by Bishop Kingsley Lewis, attorney E Ann Henry and the national security minister, was submitted to Cabinet on February 9, 2010.

The report, among other things, identified critical areas of immigration policy reform and provided recommendations.


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