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Surinam - Omitted Country Of South America III.

Published: 27.3.2010
The Government and Politics

When Surinam obtained the independence in 1975, the country was declared as Parliament Republic. However, later, in 1980, a constitution was cancelled, as a consequence of military coup d´etat. New constitution, approved in 1987 by national referendum, nominated popular elections, where 51 deputies were voted into legislative authorities - i.e. National Assembly. This authority voted for a President (Head of the State) as well as Vice-President (he was in front of the government), nominated by President. This personality was arranging so called State Council, composed from fifteen persons - representants of political groupings, trade unions as well as business and military circles. This State Council gives an advice to the government and has the right to veto the laws, presented from National Assembly. So, Desi Bouterse, lieutenant-colonel (who effected state coup d´etat in 1980) had in his office of State Councillor, nearly unlimited power. To tell the truth, in April 1993, his power was rather limited, when he was recalled from the position of Army Leader in April 1993.

Judical system involves High Court of Justice, composed from six judges, nominated for life by President, and three lower judge legal instances. As far as the administration division is concerned, the country is divided into ten districts, leaded by administrative representatives of the President, such as: Brokopondo, Commewijne, Coronie, Marowijne, Nickerie, Para, Paramaribo, Saramacca, Sipaliwini and Wanica.

After the 2nd World War, three political parties were created in Surinam, such as: Surinam National Party (1946 - protecting the interests of Creole middle class), the Indonesian Party of   National Unity and Solidarity (1947) and Unite Hindu Party (1949), uniting  all Hindus, living in Surinam. (Anyway, this party changed its name to Progressive Reforms´ Party, since 1969). However, these practically ethnical parties were forbidden after state coup d´etat in 1980. Nevertheless, they left the illegality in 1985, and formed, after two years, so called Coalitian Front for Democracy and Independence, lead by Ronald Venetiaano. This party made, from the very beginning, the opposition against National Democratic Party, established by Bouters in 1987. Surinam Labour Party was created in the same year, and this party joined Front Party, which won the elections in 1987. Nevertheless, Front Party lost its power for short time period during military uprising, but later, in 1991 won again, and Ronald Venetiaano obtained his Presidential Office. In 1996, National Democratic Party entered the coalition with Indonesian Party and several small parties, and so, thie candidate won the elections. As a consequence, Jules Wijdenbosch was nominated as a President.

After numerous demonstrations against bad economical situation in 1999, the government was forced to declare new elections. The elections were effected in May 2000, and signified the return of Ronald Venetiaano and his coalition into Presidential Palace. Later, in elections of 2005, Ronald Venetiaano was repeatedly elected as a President.

Text: Maxim Kucer

Translation: ing. Jan Jonáš


fotokönig - http://www.panoramio.com/photo/2830350

Nicole Chayne-salini - http://www.panoramio.com/photo/18171840

MC - http://www.panoramio.com/photo/6470


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