Cuban Parliament Rubber Stamps Electoral Law Calling for a Prime Minister

Cuban president Miguel Diaz Canel on Saturday at a Cuban parliament session. Photo: Juvenal Balan / granma.cu

HAVANA TIMES – Cuba’s parliament on Saturday approved a new electoral law which calls for both a president and a prime minister but does not allow for a multi-party system, maintaining the Communist Party as the only permitted political organization, reported dpa news.

Like the president and parliament deputies, the prime minister can now be elected to a maximum of two 5-year consecutive terms.

The new electoral law was unanimously approved in the parliamentary session which included former Cuban President Raul Castro, who remains at the head of the powerful Communist Party of Cuba, and current President Miguel Diaz-Canel.

Diaz-Canel is expected to remain at the head of the country and appoint a prime minister, a position for which there are still no official candidates. He is Cuba’s first president since 1976 to not come from the Castro family. Prior to 1976, Fidel Castro had been the country’s Prime Minister.

The figures of president and prime minister existed until 1976 when they disappeared with the approval of the first socialist constitution. At the time two roles were merged into the president of the Council of State, an organ of parliament, assumed by Fidel Castro until he resigned for health reasons in July, 2006, substituted by his brother Raul.

Cuba adopted a new constitution in April of this year which allows a minor economic opening, amid concern over the deterioration of the island’s economy.

The new constitution was approved by more than 86 per cent of voters in a referendum in February, according to the the government.

With the new legislation, parliament will be downsized from 605 deputies currently to 474 seats.

Despite the changes, the essence of the political system remains intact. It is a one-party system in which the Communist Party puts forward all parliamentary candidates via nominating committees.

Once seated, the parliament customarily approves all decrees handed to it from the executive by unanimous vote; it generates almost no legislation itself.


9 thoughts on “Cuban Parliament Rubber Stamps Electoral Law Calling for a Prime Minister

  • July 15, 2019 at 2:28 pm
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    Manuel Ortega uses the customary defence for the Castro communist regime – ie: things are possibly even worse elsewhere. He states that both Fidel and Raul demonstrated a sense of humour, so perhaps he can show a photograph of Raul laughing? The thousands of victims of Castro executions, found little evident humour.
    The statement that ” There is still plenty of debate and new ideas among those who choose to participate within this kind of single party political structure.” is simply hilarious. The Poder Popular does no debate – it rubber-stamps the decisions taken by Raul Castro and extended by puppet Diaz-Canel.
    And what are those “new ideas”? Please list a few. All one can observe from within Cuba is a re-hash of 19th century out-dated philosophy and a high level of mismanagement and incompetence by a tired-out bunch of communist party hacks. We all recall the posters littered around Cuba extolling “Los Ideas” emanating from the octogenarians who were and still are in power and control.
    As for China, Xi too seeks total power and control as demonstrated in Hong Kong where the majority of the population has taken to the streets to endeavour to retain a degree of democracy against the “national principles and values” of the communist regime.
    The US constitution provides for freedom of the media – the Cuban constitution does the reverse and those who dare openly to express views contrary to communism are locked up as “dissidents”.
    No Manual Ortega, it is self evident that you have little knowledge of the reality of life for the average Cuban, being somewhat blinded by your support of repression. I speak as one who attends meetings of a discussion group in Cuba and am witness to the deep care members have to take in expressing personal views rather than adhering to the communist party line. Here on HT we are using the privilege of free speech – Cubans long for it!
    The sins and errors of your own country do not excuse those of the Castro regime.

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