Back In Reckoning…
Cuba has got a Prime Minister, after 43 years!
Manuel Marrero Cruz has become the 17th Prime Minister of Cuba, and the first, since the northern Caribbean nation reinstated the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) in December 2019 after the abolishment of the position in 1976. President Miguel Díaz-Canel appointed Cruz as the PM on December 21.
The last Prime Minister before that abolition was Fidel Castro, himself! He had served as the first Prime Minister of Cuba after overthrowing the Batista Government – considered as the the US’ puppet – through a revolution in 1959. Later in 1976, the iconic Communist leader abolished the post.
This year, Cuba adopted a new Constitution which has created the post, once again. Since taking charge on April 19, 2018, President Miguel has been taking many additional responsibilities.The 56-year-old Cruz will share some of those responsibilities in the coming years. The Cuban State Media reported that “the Head of Government will be the administrative right hand of the President of the republic“.
Meanwhile, the Political Analysts are not ready to give any special importance to the PMO! They believe that it’s a minor change, as the Communist Party and the Armed Forces make all the major decisions in Cuba. Therefore, the PM is not likely to enjoy a lot of special powers, and privileges.
Cruz’s name was proposed for the post of Prime Minister, unanimously, at the National Assembly last Saturday. The State Media reported that the newly-appointed PM had played a major role in boosting the Tourism Industry. It is to be noted that tourism is one of the main sources of Cuba’s foreign exchange earnings.
Cruz had become the President of Gaviota Tourism Agency, run by the Armed Forces, in 2000. Castro had appointed him as Tourism Minister in 2004. After becoming the US President, Donald Trump imposed restriction on Gaviota hotels. However, Cruz initiated some important moves in order save the Gaviota Tourism. Now, he has become the PM. President Díaz-Canel has showered praises on Cruz and also highlighted his “honesty, ability to work, and loyalty to the Communist Party and the Revolution“.
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