Gambian nationals get the right to vote in UK elections, again

One of the quirks of the UK electoral system is how the country’s past means foreign nationals from a variety of countries get the vote in the UK. If a country is a member of the Commonwealth,* then its nationals living in the UK can vote in our elections, including general elections (despite Liam Fox’s views).

Or rather, can vote as long as the legislation has been updated. Which meant that when TheĀ Gambia left the Commonwealth in 2013, its nationals kept the vote for a fair while in the UK. Three years or so in fact.

A change of power following elections earlier this year has resulted in The Gambia rejoining the Commonwealth, and this time around the legislative moves have been less sloth-like. The law has been changed already, it has just come into force and their votes are back.

* Bonus points if you can name the two countries which are members of the Commonwealth, so giving its nationals the right to vote in UK elections, despite never having been ruled by Britain.


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3 responses to “Gambian nationals get the right to vote in UK elections, again”

  1. Three countries surely: Mozambique, Rwanda and Cameroon. Though Cameroon does incorporate territory that was British colonial most of it was French.

    • I think it’s fair to exclude Cameroon from the answers for the reasons you say. But perhaps best to word more tightly if ever used in a pub quiz!

  2. Perhaps in retrospect we should have encouraged all the other EU countries to join the Commonwealth so their nationals could vote in the Brexit Referendum.

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