On Saturday Tourism Minister of Cuba Manuel Marrero Cruz was named as the country's first Prime Minister since 1976. Marrero, 56, who was the Tourism minister for the last 16 years, had successfully turned tourism into one of the most important sectors of the Cuban economy. Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel cited the new Prime Minister Manuel Marrero's experience in negotiating with foreign investors as one of his 'prime qualifications,' according to state media. Marrero's confirmation as the new Prime Minister of Cuba by the National Assembly is expected later on Saturday.
The Prime Minister will have a five-year term and was nominated by the Cuban President Diaz-Canel after which there is an official approval by the National Assembly, which unanimously approves every proposal put before it, with one known exception in recent history. The new constitution which brings in the position of Prime Minister after 40 years envisions the prime minister as responsible for the daily operations of government as head of the Council of Ministers.
The last time Cuba had a Prime Minister, it was revolutionary hero Fidel Castro. However, the position was abolished in 1976 when Castro transitioned to the presidency, taking over from Osvaldo Dorticos after the country's constitution was restructured.
The position of Prime Minister was held by Fidel Castro from 1959 to 1976, when a new constitution was implemented. The new constitution changed his title to President and eliminated the post of Prime Minister. Castro and his brother Ral held the presidential post along with Cuba's other highest positions, like Communist Party leader, until this year, when Ral Castro stepped down as president and a new constitution divided the president's responsibilities between Castro's successor, Miguel Diaz-Canel, and the new post of Prime Minister.
(With Agency Inputs)