Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham says the Bahamas will hold general elections next month.
Ingraham said in a televised address Tuesday that his Free National Movement would seek a second consecutive term in May 7 elections.
His faction faces a challenge from former Prime Minister Perry Christie's Progressive Liberal Party, which dominated Bahamian politics from independence from Britain in 1974 until 1992.
Ingraham advised the governor general to dissolve parliament in the archipelago of 700 islands off Florida's east coast. The islands were constitutionally due to hold elections this year.
Seats will be contested in 38 districts, with the leader of the party that wins the most becoming the new prime minister.