10 Jan 2012 10:38 AM EST
-by Alex Mangini, Staff Writer; Image: Portia Simpson Miller (Image Source: Forbes)
Jamaica’s new Prime Minister has announced plans to completely sever ties with the United Kingdom and remove the Queen from her place atop the country’s hierarchy, reports the BBC.
Speaking to the nation in her inaugural address, Portia Simpson Miller outlined her intention of establishing a Jamaican president separate from the British Monarchy, which relinquished governance over the island nation roughly half a century ago.
“I love [Queen Elizabeth], she is a beautiful lady, and apart from being a beautiful lady she is a wise lady and a wonderful lady,” Simpson Miller said. “But I think time come.”
“As we celebrate our achievements as an independent nation,” she continued, “we now need to complete the circle of independence.”
According to the AlJazeera news agency, Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II is currently the head of state under Jamaica's constitution, and the governor-general, who represents the queen, formally appoints the prime minister.
A Buckingham Palace spokesman responded, “The issue of the Jamaican head of state was entirely a matter for the Jamaican government and people.”