Constitution and Legal System of the IOM
The Isle of Man is not part of the United Kingdom, but is part of the British Isles. The Queen is acknowledged as the head of state and is represented on the Island by a Lieutenant Governor. The Island is however largely self-governing through its own parliament (Tynwald). The United Kingdom Government still retains responsibility for the Island’s defence and external relations.
The Island’s parliament, known as Tynwald, has a history traceable back over a thousand years and has continually shown a strong democratic tradition which includes giving the vote to women in 1881. The parliament is bi-cameral with a popularly elected House of Keys and a Legislative Council consisting of the Lord Bishop, the Attorney General and members elected by the House of Keys. There is a Ministerial system of Government with a Chief Minister, elected by Tynwald, who, in turn, nominates 9 Ministers to be responsible for the Departments of Government.
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