Constitution

Sao Tome and Principe 1975 Constitution (reviewed 2003)

Preamble

During five centuries the Sao Tomean People were locked in a hard and heroic struggle against colonial domination for the liberty of their occupied Country, for the conquest of Sovereignty and National Independence, for the restoration of their usurped rights and for the reaffirmation of their human dignity and African character.

On 12th July, 1975, under the enlightened direction of the Liberation Movement of S. Tome and Principe—M.L.S.T.P, the Sao Tomean People attained their National Independence and proclaimed before Africa and all Humanity the Democratic Republic of S. Tome and Principe. That victory, the greatest of our History only was possible thanks to the sacrifices and to the determination of valiant sons of S. Tome and Principe who, for centuries, always resisted the colonial presence, and in 1960 organized themselves in C.L.S.T.P. and later on, in 1972 in M.L.S.T.P., until achieving the supreme objective of national liberation.

With the proclamation of National Independence, the Representative Assembly of the S. Tomean People entrusted to the Political Bureau of the M.L.S.T.P., through a stipulation in the 3rd Article of the Fundamental Law then approved, the heavy responsibility of, as the highest political organ of the Nation, assuming the leadership of the society and of the State in S. Tome and Principe, targeting the noble objective of guaranteeing independence and national unity, through the building of a Democratic State in accordance with the maximum plan of the M.L.S.T.P.

Fifteen years later and after deep analysis of the experience of legitimate exercise of power by M.L.S.T.P., the Central Committee in its session of December, 1989, faithful to the patriotic duty of promoting the balanced and harmonious development of S. Tome and Principe, decided to sanction formally the just national aspirations, expressed during the National Conference, of 5th to 8th December of 1989, in the sense of opening the necessary space to the participation of other politically organized forces, with a view toward broadening democracy, for the modernization of S. Tome and Principe.

Inspired by the historic necessity of promoting increasingly broader and responsible participation of the citizen in the various dominions of the national life, this present revision to the constitutional text, in addition to consecrating the principle that the monopoly of power does not constitute by itself alone sufficient guarantee of progress, represents the collective will of the Sao Tomeans in giving their share of contribution to the universality of the fundamental rights and freedoms of mankind.

Accordingly, with the approval by the People’s National Assembly, exercising the powers that are conferred on it by subparagraph i) of Article 32, and ratified by a Popular Referendum, under paragraph 2 of article 70, both of the current Constitution, I now promulgate the following Constitution:

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