Politics of Cape Verde

Politics of Cape Verde takes place in a framework of a parliamentary representative democratic republic, whereby the Prime Minister of Cape Verde is the head of government, and of a multi-party system. Executive power is exercised by the government. Legislative power is vested in both the government and the National Assembly. The Judiciary is independent of the executive and the legislature.The constitution first approved in 1980 and substantially revised in 1992 forms the basis of government organization. It declares that the government is the "organ that defines, leads, and executes the general internal and external policy of the country" and is responsible to the National Assembly.

Political conditions

Following independence in 1975, the African Party for the Independence of Guinea and Cape Verde (PAIGC) established a one party political system. This became the African Party for the Independence of Cape Verde (PAICV) in 1980, as Cape Verde sought to distance itself from Guinea-Bissau, following unrest in that country.

In 1991, following growing pressure for a more pluralistic society, multi-party elections were held for the first time. The opposition party, the Movement for Democracy (MpD), won the legislative elections, and formed the government. The MpD candidate also defeated the PAICV candidate in the presidential elections. In the 1996 elections, the MpD increased their majority, but in the 2001 the PAICV returned to power, winning both the Legislative and the Presidential elections.

Generally, Cape Verde enjoys a stable democratic system. The elections have been considered free and fair, there is a free press, and the rule of law is respected by the State. In acknowledgment of this, Freedom House granted Cape Verde two 1s in its annual Freedom in the World report, a perfect score. It is the only African country to receive this score.

Executive branch

President
Pedro Pires
PAICV
22 March 2001
-
Prime Minister
José Maria Neves
PAICV
1 February 2001The Prime Minister is the head of the government and as such proposes other ministers and secretaries of state. The Prime Minister is nominated by the National Assembly and appointed by the President. The President is the head of state and is elected by popular vote for a five-year term; the most recent elections were held in 2006.

Legislative branch

The National Assembly ("Asembleia Nacional") has 72 members, elected for a five year term by proportional representation.

Political parties and elections

Judicial branch

Administrative divisions

Cape Verde is divided into 22 municipalities (concelhos, singular - concelho): Boa Vista, Brava, Maio, Mosteiros, Paul, Porto Novo, Praia, Ribeira Grande, Ribeira Grande de Santiago,Sal, Santa Catarina, Santa Catarina do Fogo, Santa Cruz, São Domingos, São Filipe, São Lourenço dos Órgãos,São Miguel, São Nicolau, São Salvador do Mundo, São Vicente, Tarrafal, Tarrafal de São Nicolau,

Voting rights for noncitizens

Article 24 of the Cape Verde Constitution [cite web
url=http://www.ucp.pt/site/resources/documents/IEP/LusoForum/constituicao%20cape%20verde.pdf
format=pdf
language=Portuguese
title=Constituição da República de Cabo Verde
accessdate=2007-12-13
] states that
*alinea 3.: "Rights not conferred to foreigners and s may be attributed to citizens of countries with Portuguese as an official language, except for access to functions of sovereignty organs, service in the armed forces or in the diplomatic career."
*alinea 4. "Active and passive electoral capacity can be attributed by law to foreigners and apatrid residents on the national territory for the elections of the members of the organs of the local municipalities."

The website of the governmental Institute of Cape Verde Communities states that such a measure was adopted "to stimulate reciprocity from host countries of Cape Verdian migrants" [cite web
url=http://www.ic.cv/cidadania.html
language=Portuguese
title=Cidadania
publisher=Instituto das Comunidades de Cabo Verde
accessdate=2007-12-13
] .

A law nr. 36/V/97 was promulgated on August 25 1997 regulating the "Statute of Lusophone Citizen", concerning nationals from any country member of the Community of Portuguese Language Countries (article 2), stating in its article 3 that "The lusophone citizen with residence in Cape Verde is recognized the active and passive electoral capacity for municipal elections, under conditions of the law. The lusophone citizen with residence in Cape Verde has the right to exercise political activity related to his electoral capacity." [cite web
url=http://web.archive.org/web/20030621075304/http://www.cplp.org/documentos/7_capitulo/cid_lus.html
language=Portuguese
title=Lei nº36/V/97 - Estatuto de Cidadão Lusófono - Cabo Verde
publisher="Boletim Oficial", I Série, Nº.32, 25 de Agosto de 1997, Cabo Verde
accessdate=2007-12-14
] .

International organization participation

ACCT, ACP, AfDB, CCC, ECA, ECOWAS, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, International Maritime Organization, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), ITU, ITUC, NAM, OAU, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTrO (applicant)

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