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Gibraltar

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A referendum on the proposed new constitution of Gibraltar was held on 30 November 2006.[1] After being accepted by voters, the new constitution came into effect on the 2nd of January 2007.

The motion proposed and approved was:

In exercise of your right to self-determination, do you approve and accept the proposed new Constitution for Gibraltar? YES NO[2]

For their part, the Government of Gibraltar promoting the Yes vote had issued a leaflet in which the Chief Minister states:

I wholeheartedly commend to you this new Constitution which is the culmination of many years of political effort by the Gibraltar Government, other elected members of the House representing the Opposition, and others. This new Constitution modernises the quality of democracy in Gibraltar (and the democratic rights of the people of Gibraltar), bringing them much closer to normal European standards, by upgrading and modernising the status, role and functions of the democratic institutions of the people of Gibraltar.[3]

Contents

Results

The results of the referendum showed an endorsement far less robust than in previous referenda.

Option Votes % of vote
For 7,299 60.24%
Against 4,574 37.75%
Blank 208 1.72%
Rejected 36 0.30%
Total 12,117 100%

Turnout was 60.4 per cent.[4] which was much lower than that the 87.9% achieved for the previous Referendum on shared sovereignty but comparable to the 58% for the Election for the European Parliament.[5]

Campaigns

Various campaigns, both supporting and rejecting the proposition, were in place since the announcement of the referendum.

In spite of the unanimous support from all the political parties represented in the House of Assembly, there was a significant "No" movement. The reasons were diverse, but mainly related to two aspects: while some electors could have felt that the commitment to retaining British sovereignty was not sufficiently secure, other could have believed that the new constitution were not advanced enough in allowing the exercise of the right to self-determination. [6]

The Voice of Gibraltar Group ran a campaign urging people turn out and to vote.

References

  1. ^ Gibraltar's Constitution referendum November 30 Merco Press, 25 October 2006
  2. ^ Constitution Referendum Motion and attachment. Government of Gibraltar
  3. ^ "A new constitution for Gibraltar" Explanatory Booklet Government of Gibraltar
  4. ^ Gibraltar voters approve new constitution giving the Rock more powers International Herald Tribune, 1 December 2006
  5. ^ European Parliament Elections 2004
  6. ^ Stephen Constantine (2009). Community and identity. The making of modern Gibraltar since 1704. Manchester University Press. pp. 404. ISBN 978-0-7190-8054-8.  

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