The Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs addressed the current backlog of passport applications due to persons seeking citizenship after the recent ruling by the Privy Council on the status of children born to unwed Bahamians fathers and foreign mothers.
Sen. Hon. Ryan Pinder spoke to the issue outside of Cabinet on Tuesday. He told members of the media, “we’ve drafted the new passport rules that deal with article six of the constitution, we’ve vetted those rules now with the Passport Office, the Minister of Immigration and the Minister of Foreign Affairs who has portfolio responsibility of the passport office. They provided their comments and we revised those and circulated a revised draft to that group. Effectively if you are born in The Bahamas to unwed parents or your illegitimate at the time of birth and your father was Bahamian and that’s reflected on your birth certificate then the citizenship is naturally automatic because you presume the paternity through the birth certificate. The issue comes down when you don’t have a father in that situation listed on the birth certificate.”
Pinder says final rules will be given to the minister within the week or early next week for execution and then the passport office will be able to proceed.