Constitution Threatened by GECAL* / Dora Leonor Mesa
Dora Leonor Mesa, Translator: Unstated
First they took the communists,
and I didn't say anything because I wasn't a communist.
Then they took the Jews,
and I said nothing because I wasn't a Jew.
Then they came for the workers;
I said nothing because I was not a worker or a unionist.
Later they threw out the Catholics,
and I didn't say anything because I was a Protestant.
And finally, when they took me,
there was no one left to protest.
Excerpted from Amnesty International Catalonia, 2001 www.a-i.es ,
April 5 2012, 2:00 p.m., Havana: Fourth appearance before the judge of
the Civil Chamber of the 10th of October Court, Havana. Counsel for the
Builders Group Company of Havana (GECAL) does not appear despite having
Subject: Request for Execution of Judgment No. 17, final since June
2011, in the lawsuit filed by the Cuban citizen Dora L. Mesa Crespo
against the Provincial Microbrigades Company of Havana, now called the
Three people in black robes, a man and two women, are sitting on the
bench. Beneath them, to one side, the young courtroom secretary
valiantly tries, by furiously striking the typewriter keys, to write
quickly. The device, an old Olivetti, squeaks, gasps, and refuses to
obey, making so much noise that it is hard to hear what is being said in
the small space. Meanwhile, the Judge sitting in the center asks:
"Let's clarify this situation. What's lacking? Have they done anything?"
"Madam President, all that has happened is that the people who occupied
the place have left. The other measures called for by the judgment,
essentially the demolition, have not been done," says Dr. Garcia, the
legal representative of Mrs. Mesa Crespo.
The President, after hearing the arguments of the lawyer finds:
". . . therefore the court takes appropriate action to enforce
compliance with that decision (Case No. 17/2011) and refers the matter
to the Prosecutor, with instructions to cite the defendant Director of
GECAL for the crime of disobedience."
"Anything else?" the judge asks.
"Yes, your honor. So the Court will notify us when it will proceed with
the execution of the sentence? It is now up to the Court. We will wait
"Yes. We have to summon that person in order to see, and not to require
. . ."
The plaintiff speaks with her lawyer.
"Your honor, my client wants to tell you something."
"Yes, tell me."
"Your honor, I have absolute faith that the law will be enforced,
because the attitude of the defendants affects not just my home. GECAL
is in breach of the Constitution of the Republic. It is not respecting
the judgment of a court. I think that's much more serious than violating
my rights as an owner . . ."
Constitution of the Republic of Cuba
Courts and Prosecution
Article 123. Judgments and other decisions of the courts, issued within
the limits of their jurisdiction,must be strictly obeyed by state
agencies, business and social entities, and citizens; those directly
affected by them, as well as those who do not have a direct interest in
their implementation, must comply with them.
Article 127. The Attorney General of the Republic is the State body
which has, as its main objectives, the control and preservation of
legality, on the basis of strict monitoring of compliance with the
Constitution, laws and other legal requirements, by state agencies,
business and social entities, and citizens . . .
*Translator's note: Havana Construction Business Group
April 10 2012