Cubans started voting for their new Constitution with preliminary results being announced Monday. All citizens above 16 years are encouraged to vote.
Cuba’s National Electoral Commission opened more than 25,340 schools in the country Sunday to vote on the referendum for the new constitution of the country. All people above 16 years are encouraged to vote for the Constitution.
Voting started at 7 a.m. in all the 15 provinces and will continue till 6 p.m. local time. Around 200,000 students are minding the ballot boxes.
The preliminary results will be announced in a press conference Monday 3 p.m. local time.
Cuban embassies arond the world opened their votes on Feb. 15 to decide on the island's new constitution. Voting stations were open in Cuban consular offices in 130 countries until Feb. 17 in a process that was declared to be successful by the Special Electoral Commission of the Foreign Ministry.
During the vote, unlike in other countries, no police or military have been deployed and all the responsibilities have been given to students.
The Republic's new constitution would modernize the current one, which was approved in 1976. Almost 9 million people built the new text through a participatory process in which some 780,000 suggestions and 9,600 proposals were analyzed through 133,000 citizen meetings held between Aug. 13 and Nov. 15, 2018.
The final draft of this new Constitution, which includes 229 articles, was approved by the Cuban National Assembly on Dec. 22, 2018 after three months of public forums where all citizens were invited to contribute the final document.
"The constitutional text has a solid foundation in terms of achievements in Cuba, such as universal and free health, education, sports and recreation, culture and respect for human dignity," Abel Prieto, President of the Cultural Society Jose Marti and former Minister of Culture under former President Raul Castro, said in an interview with Prensa Latina.