At the moment Queen Elizabeth died, the throne passed immediately and without ceremony to the heir, Charles III. The 73-year-old is now called King Charles III. On September 9, Charles III made his national TV debut as king . He ascends to a new job at an age when most people are safely retired. However, with Queen’s death, Charles is not just the King of the United Kingdom, but will also head of the state of Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. All three countries are part of the “Commonwealth realm”, which is a group of 14 nations that recognise the British monarch as their head of state. This is because the position is mentioned in the constitution of these countries.
The other countries which are part of the Commonwealth realm are Antigua and Barbuda, The Bahamas, Belize, Grenada, Jamaica, Papua New Guinea, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Solomon Islands, and Tuvalu.
Canada, New Zealand, and Australia are constitutional monarchies with political systems in which the new UK monarch would be their head of state as part of the usual process.
However, with the passing away of the Queen, debates to cut ties with the British monarchy in Australia and other Commonwealth Nations have reignited.
Back in 1999, Australia held a referendum on becoming a republic, but the measure failed with 55% of voters opposing such a move.
But recently Australian lawmaker Adam Bandt reignited a persistent debate by calling on the country to sever its ties with the British crown. Bandt, the leader of Australia’s progressive Greens Party on Twitter urged Australians to “move forward,” by cutting ties with the British monarchy and becoming a republic.
New Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, who also paid tribute to Queen Elizabeth II by calling her “extraordinary,” has previously said she expects her country to become a republic within her lifetime.
Further, this year 51% of Canadians opposed the British Monarch as the head of their state “for generations to come” in a survey conducted by the non-profit and non-partisan Angus Reid Institute in April this year. In addition to this, 67% of Canadians opposed Charles as the King and official head of state of Canada, the survey claimed.
The sentiment appears to be stronger in parts of the Caribbean. Jamaica, the most populous Caribbean nation in the Commonwealth realm, began the process of transitioning into a republic in June this year. The country will likely remove the British monarch as its head of state sometime before its next general election in 2025.
Last year, the Caribbean nation of Barbados became the most recent country to remove the British monarch as its head of state and become a Republic.