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Politics of Guinea-Bissau

In Guinea-Bissau in 1989, the ruling PAIGC[?] under the direction of President Vieira began to outline a political liberalization program which the ANP[?] approved in 1991. Reforms that paved the way for multi-party democracy included the repeal of articles of the constitution, which had enshrined the leading role of the PAIGC. Laws were ratified to allow the formation of other political parties, a free press, and independent trade unions with the right to strike.

Guinea-Bissau's first multi-party elections for president and parliament were held in 1994. Following the 1998-99 civil war, presidential and legislative elections were again held, bringing opposition leader Kumba Yala[?] and his PRS[?] party to power. The PRS currently holds 38 of 102 National Assembly seats and 18 of 25 Cabinet seats.

Country name:
conventional long form: Republic of Guinea-Bissau
conventional short form: Guinea-Bissau
local long form: Republica da Guine-Bissau
local short form: Guine-Bissau
former: Portuguese Guinea

Data code: PU

Government type: republic, multiparty since mid-1991

Capital: Bissau, Guinea-Bissau

Administrative divisions: 9 regions (regioes, singular - regiao); Bafata, Biombo, Bissau, Bolama, Cacheu, Gabu, Oio, Quinara, Tombali
note: Bolama may have been renamed Bolama/Bijagos

Independence: 24 September 1973 (unilaterally declared by Guinea-Bissau); 10 September 1974 (recognized by Portugal)

National holiday: Independence Day, 24 September (1973)

Constitution: 16 May 1984, amended 4 May 1991, 4 December 1991, 26 February 1993, 9 June 1993, and 1996

Legal system: NA

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch:
chief of state: President Koumba YALLA (since 18 February 2000)
head of government: Prime Minister Caetana N'TCHAMA (since NA February 2000)
cabinet: NA
elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term; election last held 28 November 1999 and 16 January 2000 (next to be held NA 2004); prime minister appointed by the president after consultation with party leaders in the legislature
election results: Koumba YALLA elected president; percent of vote, second ballot - Koumba YALLA (PRS) 72%, Malan Bacai SANHA (PAIGC) 28%

Legislative branch: unicameral National People's Assembly or Assembleia Nacional Popular (100 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve a maximum of four years)
elections: last held 28 November 1999 (next to be held by NA 2003)
election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - PRS 37, RGB 27, PAIGC 25, 11 remaining seats went to 5 of the remaining 10 parties that fielded candidates

Judicial branch: Supreme Court or Supremo Tribunal da Justica, consists of nine justices who are appointed by the president and serve at his pleasure, final court of appeals in criminal and civil cases; Regional Courts, one in each of nine regions, first court of appeals for sectoral court decisions, hear all felony cases and civil cases valued at over $1,000; 24 Sectoral Courts, judges are not necessarily trained lawyers, hear civil cases under $1,000 and misdemeanor criminal cases

Political parties and leaders: African Party for the Independence of Guinea-Bissau and Cape Verde or PAIGC [Malan Bacai SANHA]; Front for the Liberation and Independence of Guinea or FLING [Jose Katengul M. ENDES]; Guinea-Bissau Resistance-Ba Fata Movement or RGB-MB [Domingos FERNANDES Gomes]; Guinean Civic Forum or FCG [Antonieta Rosa GOMES]; International League for Ecological Protection or LIPE [Alhaje Bubacar DJALO, president]; National Union for Democracy and Progress or UNDP [Abubacer BALDE, secretary general]; Party for Democratic Convergence or PCD [Victor MANDINGA]; Social Renovation Party or PRS [Koumba YALLA]; Union for Change or UM [Jorge MANDINGA, president, Dr. Anne SAAD, secretary general]; United Social Democratic Party or PUSD [Victor Sau'de MARIA]

International organization participation: ACCT (associate), ACP, AfDB, ECA, ECOWAS, FAO, FZ, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Intelsat (nonsignatory user), Interpol, IOC, IOM, ITU, NAM, OAU, OIC, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WADB (regional), WAEMU, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO

Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Mario LOPES DA ROSA
chancery: Suite 519, 1511 K Street, NW, Washington, DC 20005
telephone: [1] (202) 347-3950
FAX: [1] (202) 347-3954

Diplomatic representation from the US: the US Embassy suspended operations on 14 June 1998 in the midst of violent conflict between forces loyal to then President VIEIRA and military-led junta

Flag description: two equal horizontal bands of yellow (top) and green with a vertical red band on the hoist side; there is a black five-pointed star centered in the red band; uses the popular pan-African colors of Ethiopia

See also : Guinea-Bissau



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