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State structure

Legislative power is vested in the People's Assembly (Assembléia Nacional), which consists of 72 deputies elected directly for five years. The president is also elected in direct elections for a five-year term. Since the introduction of the new constitution, his functions are only ceremonial. Executive power now rests with the prime minister, who is appointed by parliament. The army is not very large (approx. 1200 men).

Social situation

Social and medical services are very poor. When the Portuguese left in 1975, health care was in complete chaos. The two hospitals in Praia and Mindelo were dilapidated. Today, every inhabited island has at least one small regional hospital and a few health centres headed by nurses. Rural health workers and midwives are being trained. Due to chronic malnutrition and one-sided food, Cape Verde has a high infant mortality rate.

Before independence, education was limited to the elite. It served the needs of the Portuguese rulers. Approximately 52% of the population is illiterate. Although compulsory education exists, it cannot be realised due to a lack of school buildings, among other things.

Of the four weekly newspapers that appear, the government publication Voz do Povo is the most important. Opinião is the organ of the MpD. There are three radio stations and one experimental television station.


The only political party was the Partido Africano de Independencia da Cabo Verde (PAICV) until 1990, but other parties were admitted in 1990. The largest party at the moment is the Movimento para a Democracia (MpD), founded in 1990. The country's third largest party, after the PAICV, is the Partido da Convergência Democrática (PCD). For the current political situation, see the history section.


Grote Lekturama wereldatlas

Irwin, A. / Cape Verde Islands
The Globe Pequot Press

Osang, R. / Kapverdische Inseln

Schleich, H.H. / Cabo Verde

CIA - World Factbook

BBC - Country Profiles

Last updated April 2024
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