When the nation became independent in 1979, it kept the then British monarch as the nominal head of government, represented by a governor-general. The governor-general appoints the leader of the majority party to be prime minister. The cabinet is appointed by the governor-general on the advice of the prime minister. Executive power is in the hands of the prime minister and cabinet, who are members of the majority party in the legislature. The legislature is unicameral, a 21-seat House of Assembly. The House of Assembly consists of representatives elected from each of 15 constituencies for a maximum of five years, plus 6 senators appointed by the governor-general.