9 Jun 2009

No immediate plans for new Pitcairn constitution, says Governor

9:42 pm on 9 June 2009

The British Governor of Pitcairn Island says there are no immediate plans for a new constitution but there are legislative changes ahead for the remote overseas territory.

George Fergusson says new management structures on the island came into effect in April with certain positions appointed in charge of various sectors.

And he says now new legislation is in the pipeline to update judicial structures, which could give effect to rights guaranteed under the European Convention on Human Rights.

Mr Ferguson says the changes, in draft form, are still being worked on but as with all Pitcairn legislation, it would be presented to the Island Council for comment.

"I dont think we're looking at the constitution itself changing which was set up in 1970. But if we are going to make changes in the judiciary for instance tidying up some of the relationships between criminal judiciary and the civil judiciary that can be done by ordinary legislation and doesn't need a constitutional change. And I think that that is probably true also of the convention of human rights in which we are looking at and doing close consultations with the island."

He says administrative structures in Auckland and Wellington are also likely to be reviewed.