Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Cuba’s electoral straitjacket

Cuba's electoral straitjacket
HILDEBRANDO CHAVIANO MONTES | La Habana | 4 de Julio de 2017 - 11:11 CEST.

The National Candidatures Committee (CCN) was just constituted.
According to the Electoral Law, this commission, as well as the
provincial and municipal ones, were created to prepare and present the
proposed candidacies of the delegates to the Provincial Assemblies and
the Deputies to the National Assembly of Popular Power (ANPP), and to
cover the positions that these and the municipal assemblies choose.

Those making up the CCN are members of the Central Union of Cuban
Workers (CTC), the Federation of Cuban Women (FMC), the Committees for
the Defense of the Revolution (CDR), the National Association of Small
Farmers (ANAP), the Federation of University Students (FEU) and the
Federation of Secondary School Students (FEEM) – all, of course, members
of the Communist Party (CCP) and the Union of Young Communists (UJC).
These constitute a "civil society" belonging to the party in power; that
is, they are not simply members of these organizations, but also
faithful followers of the orders issued by the Central Committee and its
first secretary.

These commissions guarantee that, even if the people vote for
non-communist candidates in municipal elections, the delegates of the
Provincial Assemblies, the deputies of the National Assembly, the
Council of State and its president can simply be appointed to their

The continuity of the dictatorial system is assured perpetually, even if
the country is a moral and economic disaster. Shamelessly, the
Communists impose their will, and not only by means of their cunningly
calculated laws, which are still not enough. They also cheat and coerce
voters in the constituency elections, the only stage of the electoral
process during which the people could make itself heard, if they dared
to do so.

How distant are those words abouthow "History will absolve me..." with
regards to democracy, the three-part separation of powers,
constitutional rights and general principles of law, like resistance to
dictatorship and the rights of association, assembly and expression.
Instead the Cuban government creates an apparatus that usurps the
sovereignty of the people, establishing itself as a body that decides
for the voters who is going to occupy public offices.

Thus, these public positions are not occupied by servants of the people,
paid to shape their destinies. Rather, they become assassins of a
despotic regime as abominable as any other tyranny. The public offices
designated by the Candidature Commissions are illegitimate, usurpers of
the will of the people, which ought to be determined by the polls in
free, direct and secret voting at every level, from the municipality to
the National Assembly and the Presidency of the Republic. These
positions are too important to be left to a group of political eunuchs.

A people without the right to assemble, associate or express their
opinions is not a free people. A people who cannot choose their rulers
are slaves. The Cuban people are prisoners of the PCC, and one day they
will realize this, and their situation of subjection to a regime that
has not fulfilled its promises of wellbeing for the people, and never
will. Rather it has wrested from them their freedom.

The Cuban Constitution and laws are conceived as chains and bars, and
the Candidature Commissions are the locks that complete the confinement.
Remembering a phrase a friend uttered years ago, Cuba is not a country.
She was right. It's a jail, entirely surrounded by water.

Source: Cuba's electoral straitjacket | Diario de Cuba -

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