The Nassau Liberal

Fundemental Rights and Freedoms of The Individual

 

Protection of Right to Life. 
Protection from inhumane treatment. 
Protection from slavery and forced labour. 
Protection from Arbitrary arrest and detention. 
Provisions to secure protection of law. 
Protection for privacy of home and other property. 
Protection of Freedom of Conscience. 
Protection of Freedom of Expression. 
Protection of freedom of assembly and association. 
Protection of freedom of movement 
Protection from discrimination on grounds of race, etc. 
Protection from deprivation of property. THE CONSTITUTION OF THE COMMONWEALTH OF THE
COMMONWEALTH OF THE BAHAMAS
CHAPTER III
PROTECTION OF FUNDAMENTAL RIGHTS
AND FREEDOMS OF THE INDIVIDUAL
15. Whereas every person in The Bahamas is entitled to the
fundamental rights and freedoms of the individual, that is to say,
has the right, whatever his race, place of origin, political opinions,
colour, creed or sex, but subject to respect for the rights and
freedoms of others and for the public interest, to each and all of
the following, namely-
(a) life, liberty, security of the person and the protection
of the law;
(b) freedom of conscience, of expression and of
assembly and
association; and
(c) protection for the privacy of his home and other
property and
from deprivation of property without compensation,
the subsequent provisions of this Chapter shall have effect for the
purpose of affording protection to the aforesaid rights and
freedoms subject to such limitations of that protection as are
contained in those provisions, being limitations designed to
ensure that the enjoyment of the said rights and freedoms by
any individual does not prejudice the rights and freedoms of
others or the public interest.
16. (1) No person shall be deprived intentionally of his life save
in execution of the sentence of a court in respect of a criminal
offence of which he has been convicted.
(2) A person shall not be regarded as having been
deprived of his life in contravention of this Article if he dies as the
result of the use, to such extent and in such circumstances as are
permitted by law, of such force as is reasonably justifiable-
(a) for the defence of any person from violence or for
the defence of
property;
(b) in order to effect a lawful arrest or to prevent the
escape of a
person lawfully detained;
(c) for the purpose of suppressing a riot, insurrection
or mutiny; or
(d) in order to prevent the commission by tat person of
a criminal
offence,
or if he dies as a result of a lawful act of war.
17. (1) No person shall be subjected to torture or to inhuman or
Fundamental
rights and
freedoms of the
individual.
Protection of right
to life.
Protection from
inhumane
treatment.
Protection from
slavery and forced
labour.
degrading treatment or punishment.
(2) Nothing contained in or done under the authority of any
law shall be held to be inconsistent with or in contravention of this
Article to the extent that the law in question authorizes the
infliction of any description of punishment that was lawful in the
Bahamas Islands immediately before 10th July 1973.
18. (1) No person shall be held in slavery or servitude.
(2) No person shall be required to perform forced labour.
(3) For the purposes of this Article, "forced labour" does not
include-
(a) any labour required in consequence of the sentence
or order of a
court;
(b) any labour required of a member of a disciplined
force in pursuance of
his duties as such or, in the case of a person who has
conscientious
objections to service in a naval, military or air force, any
labour which that
person is required by law to perform in place of such
service;
(c) labour required of any person while he is lawfully
detained which,
though not required in consequence of the sentence or
order of a court, is
reasonably necessary in the interests of hygiene or for
the maintenance of
the place in which he is detained; or
(d) any labour required during a period of public
emergency (that is to say,
a period to which Article 29 of this Constitution applies) or
in the event
of any other emergency or calamity that threatens the life
or well-being
of the community, to the extent that the requiring of such
labour is
reasonably justifiable, in the circumstances of any
situation arising or
existing during that period or as a result of that other
emergency or
calamity, for the purpose of dealing with that situation.
19. (1) No person shall be deprived of his personal liberty save
as may be authorized by law in any of the following cases-
(a) in execution of the sentence or order of a
court, whether established
for The Bahamas or some other country, in respect of a
criminal offence of
which he has been convicted or in consequence of his
unfitness to plead to
a criminal charge or in execution of the order of a court
on the grounds of
his contempt of that court or of another court or tribunal;
Protection from
arbitrary arrest or
detention.
(b) in execution of the order of a court made in order to
secure the
fulfillment of any obligation imposed upon him by law;
(c) for the purpose of bringing him before a court
in execution of the order
of a court;
(d) upon reasonable suspicion of his having
committed, or of being about
to commit, a criminal offence;
(e) in the case of a person who has not attained the
age of eighteen
years, for the purpose of his education or welfare;
(f) for the purpose of preventing the spread of
an infectious or contagious
disease or in the case of a person who is, or is
reasonably suspected to
be, of unsound mind, addicted to drugs or alcohol, or
a vagrant, for the
purpose of his case or treatment of the protection of the
community;
(g) for the purpose of preventing the unlawful entry of
that person into
The Bahamas or for the purpose of effecting the
expulsion,
extradition or other lawful removal from the Bahamas of
that
person or the taking of proceedings relating thereto; and
without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing, a law
may,
for the purposes of this sub-paragraph, provide that a
person who
is not a citizen of The Bahamas may be deprived of this
liberty to
such extent as may be necessary in the execution of a
lawful
order requiring that person to remain within a specified
area within
The Bahamas or prohibiting him from being within such
an area.
(2) Any person who is arrested or detained shall be
informed as soon as is reasonably practicable, in a language that
he understands, of the reason for his arrest or detention and shall
be permitted, at his own expense, to retain and instruct without
delay a legal representative of his own choice and to hold private
communication with him; and in the case of a person who has not
attained the age of eighteen years he shall also be afforded a
reasonable opportunity for communication with his parent or
guardian.
(3) Any person who is arrested or detained in such a case
as is mentioned in sub-paragraph (1)(c) or (d) of this Article and
who is not released shall be brought without undue delay before a
court; and if any person arrested or detained in such a case as is
mentioned in the said sub-paragraph (1)(d) is not tried within a
reasonable time he shall (without prejudice to any further
Provisions to
secure protection
of law.
proceedings that may be brought against him) be released either
unconditionally or upon reasonably necessary to ensure that he
appears at a later date for trial of for proceedings preliminary to
trial.
(4) Any person who is unlawfully arrested or detained by
any other persons hall be entitled to compensation therefor from
that other person.
(5) Where a person is detained by virtue of such a law
as is referred to in Article 29 of this Constitution, the following
provisions shall apply-
(a) he shall, as soon as reasonably practicable and
in any
case not more than five days after the
commencement
of his detention, be furnished with a statement
in writing,
in a language that he understands, of the grounds
upon
which he is detained;
(b) not more than fourteen days after the
commencement
of his detention, a notification shall be published in
the
Gazette stating that he has been detained and giving
particulars of the provisions of law under which his
detention is authorized;
(c) he may from time to time request that his
case
be reviewed under sub-paragraph (d) of this
paragraph but,
where he has made such a request, no subsequent
request
shall be made before the expiration of three months
from the
making of the previous request;
(d) where a request is made under sub-paragraph
(c) of this
paragraph, the case shall, within one month of
the making
of the request, be reviewed by an independent and
impartial
tribunal established by law, presided over by the
Chief Justice
or another Justice of the Supreme Court appointed by
him,
and consisting of persons who are Justices of the
Supreme
Court or who are qualified to be appointed as
Justices of the
Supreme Court;
(e) he shall be afforded reasonable facilities to
consult and
instruct, at his own expense, a legal
representative of his
own choice, and he and any such legal
representative shall
be permitted to make written or oral representations
or both
to the tribunal appointed for the review of his case.
(6) On any review by a tribunal in pursuance of
paragraph (5) of this Article of the case of any detained person,
the tribunal may make recommendations concerning the necessity
or expediency of continuing his detention to the authority by whom
it was ordered, but unless it is otherwise provided by law, that
authority shall not be obliged to act in accordance with any such
recommendations.
(7) When any person is detained by virtue of such a law as
is referred to in Article 29 of this Constitution the Prime Minister of
a Minister authorized by him shall, not more than thirty days after
the commencement of the detention and thereafter no more than
thirty days after the making of the previous report, make a report
to each House stating the number of persons detained as
aforesaid and the number of cases in which the authority that
ordered the detention has not acted in accordance with the
recommendations of a tribunal appointed in pursuance of
paragraph (5) of this Article:
Provided that in reckoning any period of thirty days for the
purposes of this paragraph no account shall be taken of any
period during which parliament stands prorogued or dissolved.
20. (1) If any person is charged with a criminal offence, then
unless the charge is withdrawn, the case shall be afforded a fair
hearing within a reasonable time by an independent and impartial
court established by law.
(2) Every person who is charged with a criminal offence-
(a) shall be presumed to be innocent until he is
proved or
has pleaded guilty;
(b) shall be informed as soon as reasonably
practicable, in
a language that he understands and in detail, of the
nature of
the offence charged;
(c) shall be given adequate time and facilities for the
preparation
of his defence;
(d) shall be permitted to defend himself before the
court in
person or, at his own expense, by a legal
representative of his
own choice or by a legal representative at the public
expense
where so provided by or under a law in force in The
Bahamas;
(e) shall be afforded facilities to examine in person or
by his
legal representative the witnesses called by the
prosecution
Protection for
privacy of home
and other
property.
Protection of
freedom of
conscience.
before the court, and to obtain the attendance and
carry out
the examination of witnesses to testify on his behalf
before the
court on the same condition as those applying to
witnesses
called by the prosecution;
(f) shall be permitted to have without payment the
assistance
of an interpreter if he cannot understand the language
used at
the trial of the charge; and
(g) shall, when charged on information in the
Supreme Court,
have the right to trial by jury;
and except with his own consent the trial shall not take place in
his absence unless he so conduct himself in the court as to render
the continuance of the proceedings in his presence impracticable
and the court has ordered him to be removed and the trial to
proceed in his absence.
(3) When a person is tried for any criminal offence, the
accused person or any person authorized by him in that behalf
shall, if he so requires and subject to payment of such reasonable
fee as may be prescribed by law, be given within a reasonable
time after judgment a copy for the use of the accused person of
any record of the proceedings made by or on behalf of the court.
(4) No person shall be held to be guilty of a criminal
offence on account of any act or omission that did not, at the time
it took place, constitute such an offence that is severer in degree
or description than the maximum penalty that might have been
imposed for that offence at the time when it was committed.
(5) No person who shows that he has been tried by a
competent court for a criminal offence and either convicted or
acquitted shall again be tried for that offence or for any other
criminal offence of which he could have been convicted at the trial
for that offence, save upon the order of a superior court in the
course of appeal or review proceedings relating to the conviction
or acquittal.
(6) No person shall be tried for a criminal offence if he
shows that he has been pardoned for that offence.
(7) No person who is tried for a criminal offence shall be
compelled to give evidence at the trial.
(8) Any court or other adjudicating authority prescribed by
law for the determination of the existence or extent of any civil
right of obligation shall be established by law and shall be
independent and impartial; and where proceedings for such a
determination are institute by any person before such a court or
other adjudicating authority, the case shall be given a fair hearing
within a reasonable time.
(9) All proceeding instituted in any court for the
determination of the existence or extent of any civil right or
obligation, including the announcement of the decision of the
court, shall be held in public;
(10) Nothing in paragraph (9) of this Article shall prevent
the court from excluding from the proceedings persons other than
Protection of
freedom of
expression.
Protection of
freedom of
assembly and
association.
Protection of
freedom of
movement.
the parties thereto and their legal representatives to such extent
as the court-
(a) may be empowered by law so to do and may
consider
necessary or expedient in circumstances where
publicity would
prejudice the interests of justice, or in interlocutory
proceedings
or in the interests of public morality, the welfare of
persons under
the age of eighteen years of the protection of the
private live of
persons concerned in the proceedings;
(b) may be empowered or required by law to do so in
the interests
of defence, public safety of public order; or
(c) may be empowered or required to do so by rules
of court and
practice existing immediately before 10th July 1973 of
by any law
made subsequently to the extent that it makes
provisions
substantially to the same effect as provision contained
in any
such rules.
(11) Nothing contained in or done under the authority of
any law shall be held to be inconsistent with or in contravention of-
(a) sub-paragraph (2)(a) of this Article to the extent
that the law
in question imposes upon any person charged with a
criminal
offence the burden of proving particular facts;
(b) sub-paragraph (2)(e) of this Article to the extent
that the law
in question imposes conditions that must be satisfied if
witnesses
called to testify on behalf of an accused person are to
be paid their
expenses out of public funds;
(c) paragraph (5) of this Article to the extent that the
law in
question authorizes a court to try a member of a
disciplined force
for a criminal offence notwithstanding any trial and
conviction or
acquittal of that member under the disciplinary law of
that force,
so, however, that any court so trying such a member
and
convicting him shall in sentencing him to any
punishment take
into account any punishment awarded him under that
disciplinary
law.
21. (1) Except with his consent, no person shall be subjected
Protection from
discrimination on
the grounds of
race, etc.
to the search of his person or his property of the entry by others
on his premises.
(2) Nothing contained in or done under the authority of
any law shall be held to be inconsistent with or in contravention of
this Article to the extent that the law in question makes provisions-
(a) which is reasonably required-
(i) in the interests of defence, public safety,
public
order, public morality, public health, town and
country
planning, he development of mineral resources, or
the
development of utilization of any other property in
such
a manner as to promote the public benefit; or
(ii) for the purpose of protecting the rights and
freedoms
other persons;
(b) to enable an officer or agent of the Government
of The
Bahamas, a local government authority or a body
corporate
established by law for public purposes to enter on the
premises
of any person in order to inspect those premises or
anything
thereon for the purpose of any tax, rate or due or in
order to carry
out work connected with any property that is lawfully on
those
premises and the belongs to that Government,
authority or body
corporate, as the case may be; or
(c) to authorize, for the purpose of enforcing
the judgment or
order of a court in any civil proceedings, the search of
any
person or property by order of a court or the entry upon
any
premises by such order,
and except so far as that provisions or, as the case may be, the
thing done under the authority thereof is shown not to be
reasonably justifiable in a democratic society.
22. (1) Except with his consent, no person shall be hindered in
the enjoyment of his freedom of conscience, and for the purposes
of this Article the said freedom includes freedom of thought and of
religion, freedom to change his religion or belief and freedom,
either alone or in community with others, and both in public and in
private, to manifest and propagate his religion of belief in worship,
teaching, practice and observance.
(2) Except with his consent (or, if he is a person who has
not attained the age of eighteen years, the consent of his
guardian) no person attending any place of education shall be
required to receive religious instruction or to take part in or attend
Protection from
deprivation of
property.
any religious ceremony or observance of that instruction,
ceremony or observance relates to a religion other than his own.
(3) No religious body or denomination shall be prevented
from or hindered in providing religious instruction for persons of
that body of denomination in the course of any education provided
by that body or denomination whether or not that body or
denomination is in receipt of any government subsidy, grant or
other form of financial assistance designed to meet, in whole or in
part, the cost of such course of education.
(4) No person shall be compelled to take any oath which is
contrary to his religion or belief of to take any oath in a manner
which is contrary to his religion or belief.
(5) Nothing contained in or done under the authority of any
law shall be held to be inconsistent with or in contravention of this
Article to the extent that the law in question makes provision
which is reasonably required-
(a) in the interest of defence, public safety, public
order, public
morality or public health; or
(b) for the purpose of protecting the rights and
freedoms of other
persons, including the right to observe and practice any
religion
without the unsolicited interference of member of any
other religion,
and except so far as that provision or, as the case may be, the
thing done under the authority thereof is shown not to be
reasonably justifiable in a democratic society.
23. (1) Except with his consent, no person shall be hindered
in the enjoyment of his freedom of expression, and for the
purposes of this Article the said freedom includes freedom to hold
opinions, to receive and impart ideas and information without
interference, and freedom from interference with his
correspondence.
(2) Nothing contained in or done under the authority of
any law shall be held to be inconsistent with or in contravention of
this Article to the extent that the law in question makes provision-
(a) which is reasonably required-
(i) in the interests of defence, public safety,
public
order, public morality or public health; or
(ii) for the purposes of protecting the rights,
reputations
and freedoms of other persons, preventing the
disclosure of
information received in confidence, maintaining
the authority
and independence of the courts, or regulating
telephony,
telegraphy, posts, wireless broadcasting,
television, public
exhibitions or public entertainment; or
(b) which imposes restrictions upon persons holding
office under
the Crown or upon members of a disciplined force, and
except so
far as that provision or, as the case may be, the thing
done under
the authority thereof is shown not to be reasonably
justifiable in a
democratic society.
24. (1) Except with his consent, no person shall be hindered
in the enjoyment of his freedom of peaceful assembly and
association, that is to say, his right to assemble freely and
associate with other persons and in particular to form or belong to
political parties, or to form or belong to trade unions or other
association for the protection of his interests.
(2) Nothing contained in or done under the authority of any
law shall be held to be inconsistent with or in contravention of this
Article to the extent that the law in question makes provision-
(a) which is reasonably required-
(i) in the interest of defence, public safety,
public
order, public morality or public health; or
(ii) for the purpose of protecting the rights and
freedoms
of other persons; or
(b) which imposes restriction upon person s holding
office under
the Crown or upon members of a discipline force,
and except so far as that provision or, as the case may be, the
thing done under the authority thereof is shown not to be
reasonably justifiable in a democratic society.
25. (1) Except with his consent, no person shall be hindered
in the enjoyment
of his freedom of movement, and for the purposes of this Article
the said freedom means the right to move freely throughout The
Bahamas, the right to reside in any part thereof, the right to enter
The Bahamas, the right to leave The Bahamas and immunity from
expulsion therefrom.
(2) Nothing contained in or done under the authority of
any law shall be held to be inconsistent with or in contravention of
this Article to the extent that the law in question makes provision-
(a) which is reasonably required-
(i) in the interests of defence, public safety,
public
order, public morality, public health, town and
country
planning of the prevention of plant or animal
diseases; or
(ii) for the purpose of protecting the rights and
freedoms
of other persons,
and except so far as that provision or, as the case may be, the
Enforcement of
fundamental
rights.
thing done under the authority thereof is shown not to be
reasonably justifiable in a democratic society;
(b) for the removal of a person from The Bahamas to
be tried
outside The Bahamas for a criminal offence or to
undergo
imprisonment in some other country in respect of a
criminal
offence of which he has been convicted;
(c) for the imposition of restriction upon the
movement
of residence within The Bahamas of public officers or
member of a disciplined force that are reasonably
required for the purpose of the proper performance of
their functions; or
(d) for the imposition of restriction on the right of any
person to leave The Bahamas of any person who is not
a
citizen of The Bahamas or the exclusion or expulsion
therefrom of any such person; or
(e) for the imposition of restrictions on the right of
any
person to leave The Bahamas in the public interest, or
for
securing compliance with any international obligation of
the Government of The Bahamas particulars of which
have
been laid before Parliament.
(3) Any restriction on a person's freedom of movement
which is involved in his lawful detention shall not be held to be
inconsistent with or in contravention of this Article.
(4) For the purposes of sub-paragraph (c) of paragraph
(2) of this Article "law" in that paragraph includes directions in
writing regarding the conduct of public officers generally of any
class of public officer issued by the Government of The Bahamas.
26. (1) Subject to the provision of paragraph (4), (5) and (9)
of this Article no law shall make any provision which is
discriminatory either of itself or in its effect.
(2) Subject to the provisions of paragraphs (6), (9) and
(10) of this Article, no person shall be treated in a discriminatory
manner by any person acting by virtue of any written law or in the
performance of the function of any public office or any public
authority.
(3) In this Article, the expression "discriminatory" means
affording different treatment to different person attributable wholly
or mainly to their respective descriptions by race, place of origin
political opinions colour or creed whereby person of one such
description are subjected to disabilities or restrictions to which
person of another such description are not made subject or are
accorded privileges or advantages which are not accorded to
persons of another such description.
Provisions for time
of war or
emergency.
Saving of Existing
law.
(4) Paragraph (1) of this Article shall not apply to any law
so far as that law makes provision-
(a) for the appropriation of revenues or other funds
of
The Bahamas or for the imposition of taxation
(including
the levying of fees for the grant of licences; or
(b) with respect to the entry into or exclusion from,
or the employment, engaging in any business or
profession,
movement of residence within, The Bahamas of
persons
who are not citizens of The Bahamas; or
(c) with respect to adoption, marriage, divorce,
burial,
devolution of property on death or other matters of
personal
law; or
(d) whereby persons of any such description as is
mentioned in paragraph (3) for this Article may be
subjected
to any disability or restriction or may be accorded any
privilege or advantage which having regard to its
nature
and to special circumstances pertaining to those
persons
or to persons of any other such description, is
reasonably justifiable in a democratic society; or
(e) for authorizing the granting of licenses or
certificates
permitting the conduct of a lottery, the keeping of a
gaming
house or the carrying on of gambling in any of its
forms
subject to conditions which impose upon persons who
are
citizens of The Bahamas disabilities or restriction to
which
other persons are not made subject.
(5) Nothing contained in any law shall be held to be
inconsistent whit or in contravention of paragraph (1) of this Article
to the extent that it makes provision with respect to standards or
qualifications (not being a standard or qualification specifically
relating to race, place of origin, political opinions, colour or creed)
in order to be eligible for service as a public officer or as a
member of a disciplined force of for the service of a local
government authority or a body corporate established by law for
public purposes.
(6) Paragraph (2) of this Article shall not apply to
anything which is expressly of by necessary implication authorized
to be done by any such provision of law as is referred to in
paragraphs (4) or (5) of this Article.
(7) Subject to the provisions of subparagraph (4)(e) and of
paragraph (9) of this Article no person shall be treated in a
Interpretation.
discriminatory manner in respect of access to any of the following
places to which the general public have access, namely, shops,
hotels, restaurants, eating-houses, licensed premises, places of
entertainment or places of resort.
(8) Subject to the provisions of this Article no person shall
be treated in a discriminatory manner-
(a) in respect of any conveyance or lease or
agreement for,
or in consideration of, or collateral to, a conveyance or
lease of
any freehold or leasehold hereditament which have
been offered
for sale or lease to the general public;
(b) in respect of any covenant or provision in any
conveyance or lease or agreement for , or in
consideration
of, or collateral to, a conveyance or lease restricting
by discriminatory provision the transfer, ownership,
use or occupation of any freehold or leasehold
hereditament which have been offered for sale or
lease to the general public.
(9) Nothing contained in or done under the authority of any
law shall be held to be inconsistent with or in contravention of this
Article to the extent that the law in question makes provision
whereby persons of any such description as is mentioned in
paragraph (3) of this Article may be subjected to any restriction on
the rights and freedoms guaranteed by Articles 21,22,23,24 and
25 of this Constitution, being such a restriction as is authorized by
Article 21(2)(a), 22(5), 23(2), 24(2) or 25(2)(a) or (e), as the case
may be.
(10) Nothing in paragraph (2) of this Article shall affect any
discretion relating to the institution, conduct or discontinuance of
civil or criminal proceedings in any court that is vested in any
person by or under this Constitution or any other law.
27. (1) No property of any description shall be compulsorily
taken possession of, and no interest in or right over property of
any description shall be compulsorily acquired, except where the
following conditions are satisfied, that is to say-
(a) the taking of possession or acquisition is
necessary in
the interests of defence, public safety, public order,
public
morality, public health, town and country planning or the
development or utilization of any property in such
manner as
to promote the public benefit or the economic well-being
of the
community; and
(b) the necessity thereof is such as to afford
reasonable
justification for the causing of any hardship that may
result to
any person having an interest in or right over the
property; and
(c) provision is made by a law applicable to that
taking of
possession or acquisition-
(i) for the making of prompt and adequate
compensation
in the circumstances; and
(ii) securing to any person having an interest in
or right
over the property a right of access to the Supreme
Court,
whether direct or on appeal from any other
authority,
for the determination of his interest or right, the
legality
of the taking of possession or acquisition of the
property,
interest or right, and the amount of any
compensation
to which he is entitled, and for the purpose of
obtaining
prompt payment of that compensation; and
(d) any party to proceedings in the Supreme Court
relating to
such a claim is given by law the same rights of appeal as
are
accorded generally to parties to civil proceedings in that
Court
sitting as a court of original jurisdiction.
(2) Nothing in this Article shall be construed as affecting the
making or operation of any law so far as it provides for the taking
of possession or acquisition of property-
(a) in satisfaction of any tax, rate or due;
(b) by way of penalty for breach of the law, whether
under
civil process or after conviction of a criminal offence
under the
law of The Bahamas;
(c) as an incident of a lease, tenancy, mortgage,
charge, bill
of sale, pledge or contract;
(d) upon the attempted removal of the property in
question out
of or into The Bahamas in contravention of any law;
(e) by way of the taking of a sample for the purposes
of
any law;
(f) where the property consist of an animal upon its
being
found trespassing
(g) in the execution of judgments or orders of courts;
(h) by reason of its being in a dilapidated or
dangerous
state of injurious to the health of human beings, animals
or plants;
(i) in consequence of any law making provision for
the
validation of titles to words) the confirmation of such
titles, or for the extinguishment of adverse claims, or
actions,
(j) for so long only as may be necessary for the
purposes of
any examination, investigation, trial or inquiry or, in the
case of
land, the carrying out thereon-
(i) of work or reclamation, drainage, soil
conservation or
the conservation of other natural resources; or
(ii) of agricultural development or improvement
that the
owner or occupier of the land has been required,
and has
without reasonable and lawful excuse, refused or
failed to
carry out; or
(k) to the extent that the law in question makes
provision for
the vesting or taking of possession or acquisition or
administration of-
(i) enemy property;
(ii) property of a deceased person, a person of
unsound
mind of a person who has not attained the age of
twenty-one
years, for the purpose of its administration for the
benefit of
the persons entitled to the beneficial interest therein;
(iii) property of a person adjudged insolvent or a
defunct company that has been struck off the
Register
of Companies, of a body corporate in liquidation, for
the
purpose of its administration for the benefit of the
creditors
of that insolvent person or body corporate and,
subject
thereto, for the benefit of other person entitled to
the
beneficial interest in the property; or
(iv) property subject to a trust, for the purpose of
vesting
the property creating the trust or by a court or, by
order of
a court, for the purpose of giving effect to the trust.
(3) Nothing contained in or done under the authority of any
law shall be held to be inconsistent with or in contravention of this
Article to the extent that the law in question makes provision for
the orderly marketing or production or growth or extraction of any
agricultural or fish product or mineral or water or any article or
thing prepared for market or manufactured therefor of for the
reasonable restriction of the use of any property in the interest of
safeguarding the interests of others or the protection of tenants,
licensees or others having rights in or over such property.
(4) Nothing contained in or done under that authority of
any law shall be held to be inconsistent with or in contravention of
this Article to the extent that the law in question makes provision
for the compulsory taking possession in the public interest of any
property, or the compulsory acquisition in the public interest or
right is held by a body corporate established directly by law for
public purpose in which no monies have been invested other than
monies provided by Parliament or by any Legislature established
for the former Colony of the Bahamas Islands.
28. (1) If any person alleges that any of the provisions of
Articles 16 to 27 (inclusive) of this Constitution has been, is being
of is likely to be contravened in relation to him then, without
prejudice to any other action with respect to the same matter
which is lawfully available, that person may apply to the Supreme
Court for redress.
(2) The Supreme Court shall have original jurisdiction-
(a) to hear and determine any application made by
any person in pursuance of paragraph (1) of this
Article; and
(b) to determine any question arising in the case of
any
person which is referred to it in pursuance of
paragraph (3)
of this Article,
and may make such orders, issue such writs and give such
directions as it may consider appropriate for the purpose of
enforcing or securing the enforcement of any of the provisions of
the said Articles 16 to 27 (inclusive) to the protection of which the
person concerned is entitled:
Provided that the Supreme Court shall not exercise its power
under this paragraph if it is satisfied that adequate means of
redress are or have been available to the person concerned under
any other law.
(3) If, in any proceedings in any court established for The
Bahamas other than the Supreme Court or the Court of Appeal,
any question arises as to the contravention of any of the
provisions of the said Articles 16 to 27 (inclusive), the court in
which the question to the Supreme Court.
(4) No law shall make provision with respect to rights of
appeal from any determination of the Supreme Court in pursuance
of this Article that is less favorable to any party thereto than the
rights of appeal from determinations of the Supreme Court that
are accorded generally to parties to civil proceedings in that Court
sitting as a court or original jurisdiction.
(5) Parliament may make laws to confer upon the
Supreme Court such additional or supplementary powers as may
appear to be necessary or desirable for enabling the Court more
effectively to exercise the jurisdiction conferred upon it by
paragraph (2) of this Article and may make provision with respect
to the practice and procedure of the Court while exercising that
jurisdiction.
29. (1) This Article applies to any period when-
(a) The Bahamas is at war; or
(b) there is in force a proclamation (in this section
referred to as a "proclamation of emergency") made by
the Governor-General and published in the Gazette
declaring that a state of public emergency exists for
the purposes of this section.
(2) Nothing contained in or done under that authority of any
law shall be held to be inconsistent with or in contravention of
Article 19, any provision of Article 20 other than paragraph (4)
thereof, or any provision of Article 21 to 26 (inclusive) of this
Constitution to the extent that the law in Question makes in
relation to any period to which this Article applies provision, or
authorizes the doing during any such period of anything, which is
reasonably justifiable in the circumstances of any situation or
existing during that period for the purpose of dealing with that
situation.
(3) Where any proclamation of emergency has been
made, copies thereof shall as soon as practicable be laid before
both Houses of Parliament, and if for any cause those Houses are
not due to meet within five days the Governor-General shall, by
proclamation published in the Gazette, summon them to meet
within five days and they shall accordingly meet and sit upon the
day appointed by the proclamation and shall continue to sit and
act as if they had stood adjourned or prorogued to that day:
Provided that if the proclamation of emergency is made
during the period between a dissolution of Parliament and the next
ensuing general election-
(a) the Houses to be summoned as aforesaid shall
be the
Houses referred to in Article 66 of this Constitution
unless the
Governor-General is satisfied that it will be practicable
to hold
that election within seven days of the making of the
proclamation of emergency; and
(b) if the Governor-General is so satisfied, he shall
(instead
of summoning the House so referred to meet within
five days
of the making of the Parliament to meet as election.
(4) A proclamation of emergency shall, unless it is sooner
revoked by the Governor-General, cease to be in force at the
expiration of a period of fourteen days beginning on the date on
which it was made or such longer period as may be provided
under paragraph (5) of this Article, but without prejudice to the
making of another proclamation of emergency at or before the end
of that period.
(5) If at any time while a proclamation of emergency is in
force (including any time while it is in force by virtue of
the provisions of this paragraph) a resolution is passed
by each House of Parliament approving its
continuance in force for a further period, not exceeding
six months, beginning on the date on which it would
otherwise expire, the proclamation shall, if not sooner
revoked, continue in force for that further period.
30. (1) Subject to paragraph (3) of this Article, nothing
contained in or done under the authority of any written law shall
be held to be inconsistent with or in contravention of any provision
of Articles 16 to 27 (inclusive) of this Constitution to the extent that
the law in question-
(a) is a law (in this Article referred to as "an existing
law")
that was enacted or made before 10th July 1973 and
has
continued to be part
(b) repeals and re-enacts an existing law without
alteration;
or
(c) alters an existing law and does not thereby render
that
law inconsistent with any provision of the said Articles
16 to
27 (inclusive) in a manner in which, or to an extent to
which,
it was not previously so inconsistent.
(2) In sub-paragraph (1)(c) of this Article the reference to
altering an existing law includes references to repealing it and reenacting
it with modifications or making different provisions in lieu
thereof, and to modifying it; and in paragraph 81) of this Article
"written law" includes any instrument having the force of law and
in this paragraph and the said paragraph (1) references to the
repeal and re-enactment of an existing law shall be construed
accordingly.
(3) This Article does not apply to any regulation or other
instrument having legislative effect made, or to any
executive act done, after 9th July 1973 under the
authority of any such law as is mentioned in paragraph
(1) of this Article.
(4)
31. (1) In this Chapter-
"contravention", in relation to any requirement, includes a
failure to comply with that requirement; and cognate expressions
shall be construed accordingly;
"court" means any court of law having jurisdiction in The
Bahamas other than a court established by a disciplinary law, and
includes the Judicial Committee of Her Majesty's Privy Council
or any court substituted therefore by any law made under Article
105 of this Constitution and-
(a) In Article 16, Article 18, Article 19, paragraphs
(2), (3), (5),
(8), (9) and (10) of Article 26 and paragraph (3) of Article
28 of this
Constitution includes, in relation to an offence against a
disciplinary law, a court established by such a law; and
(b) In Article 18, Article 19 and paragraph (3) of Article
28 of this
Constitution includes, in relation to an offence against a
disciplinary law, any person or authority empowered to
exercise
jurisdiction in respect of that offence;
"disciplinary law" means a law regulating the discipline of any
disciplined force;
"disciplined force" means-
(a) a naval, military or air force;
(b) the Police Service of The Bahamas; or
(c) the Prison Service of The Bahamas; or
(d) any other force or service specified by Act
of Parliament
to be a disciplined force for the purposes of this Chapter;
"legal representative" means a person entitled to practice in
The Bahamas as Counsel and Attorney of the Supreme Court;
"member" in relation to a disciplined force includes any person
who, under the law regulating the discipline of that force, is
subject to that discipline.
(2) Any reference in Articles 16, 19, 25 and 27 of this
Constitution to a criminal offence shall be construed as including
an offence against disciplinary law, and any such reference in
paragraphs (2) to (7) (inclusive) of Article 20 of this Constitution
shall, in relation to proceedings before a court constituted by or
under disciplinary law, be construed in the same manner.
(3) In relation to any person who is a member of a
disciplined force raise under a law of any country other than The
Bahamas and lawfully present in The Bahamas, nothing contained
in or done under the authority of the disciplinary law of that force
shall be held to be inconsistent, with or in contravention of any of
the provisions of this Chapter.

 There are disclaimers within some paragraphs of the articles. See: http://www.bahamas.gov.bs/bahamasweb/aboutthegovernment.nsf/Subjects/The+Constitution+of+the+Bahamas 

Quote of the Day

Quote of the Day

We want to know what you think!