A small island country in the Lesser Antilles, the Commonwealth of Dominica has been an independent nation since Novermber 3, 1978, when it split from the West Indies Federation. It is run as a parliamentary democracy and a republic, with an elected President who acts as head of state, while the executive power rests in the Prime Minister and Cabinet. The parliament is unicameral, with 21 elected members and 9 appointed senators in the House of Assembly. The judiciary consists of the Magistrates' Courts, the High Court, and the Court of Appeal. Cases can be appealed to the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court and Dominica recent voted to take on the Caribbean Court of Justice as the court of final appeals, as opposed to the Privy Council.
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