Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Big news in Havana ...

The official Cuban media has just announced a major reshuffle of the Council of State, the body that is supposed to govern the island, although in fact, it’s nothing more than a bunch of colourless Communist Party apparatchiks who owe their loyalty to the Castro brothers.

The unexpected shake-up involves the removal of a truckload of ministers, most of whom would be little known to ordinary Cubans.

However, there are two noteworthy demotions, involving two senior ministers who have had a very high public profile outside Cuba: Carlos Lage and Felipe Perez Roque.

Lage, 57, a doctor by training, is a one-time economics adviser to Fidel Castro and vice-president of the Council of State who was seen until recently as a possible contender for the top job in a transitional scenario.

The odious Perez Roque, 43, used to be chief of staff to the now semi-retired dictator back int he late 1990s and early 2000s, and later became minister for Foreign Affairs and thus, the public face of the regime internationally.

The announcement does not explain why the two men have been removed from office but then again, this is not unusual - the regime never officially explains why it moves its senior people around.

Intriguingly, both Lage and Perez Roque were always seen as protégés of Castro I.

Stay tuned.


Blogger Henry Louis Gomez said...

Odious is the perfect adjective for el cabezon de Perez Roque.

10:48 am  

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