Compulsory Purchase. What for? / Noel Rodriguez Avila

Lic. Noel Rodríguez Ávila

Our present work is concentrating on the processes of compulsory purchase (forced expropriation) against the owners of motor vehicles transporting freight from the provinces of Holguín and Las Tunas.

Before they started this, in the extinct transport sectors, they created commissions for the buying and selling of trucks, which followed the express instructions of the Ministry of Transport in regard to inspecting the vehicles in question, to detect anything illegal done by their owners in terms of parts, components, accessories or engine units.

Once they had finished the inspection, they wrote out a report on the deficiencies they had detected; afterwards they gave the owner a document directing him to sell his vehicle, for which they paid by cheque in the payee’s name in national money for the value of $1800 or $2500, depending on the tonnage.

This transaction was covered by an ambiguous, corrupt and one-sided contract of sale authorized by Resolution 118-88 of the Ministry of Transport, the law 1090/63, complemented by the law 1148/64, and the law 1206/67, which entitled the Central Administration entities of the state to acquire the assets required for the taking forward of their activities; giving rise to a situation in which, on the presentation of demands before the Civil and Administrative Chamber of the Provincial Tribunals, the sale was Held to be Null and Void because of the exclusion of the spouse’s interest.

In those cases where the vehicle’s owner refuses to effect the sale, the process of compulsory purchase is commenced; a procedure which is instituted in our legal and constitutional system, ensured both by the Constitution of the Republic in Art. 25 and also in Arts. 425 et seq. of the Law of Civil, Administrative, Employment and Economic Procedure; being the prerequisite which mediates the declaration of public necessity and social interest.

On that basis the Ministry of Transport issued Resolutions number 40 and 85, which declared the public necessity and social interest in acquiring the said vehicles which were operating in the eastern area, in order that the Holguín Truck Company could achieve its transport plans. Looking back, it is clear that the objective of this process was to get rid of the private sector.

This view is backed up by an legal Opinion issued by the legal directorate of the Ministry of Transport, in relation to a complaint presented by truckers from the province of Holguín addressed to Raúl Castro Ruz, who was at that time Second Secretary of the PCC (Communist Party of Cuba) and Minister of the FAR Revolutionary Armed Forces); in which, among other things, there is the following reference: The compulsory purchase of trucks, initiated against their owners, has its antecedents in the year 1989, when, on the orders of the high command of the country they made available what was termed “The policy of making things harder for the private sector, with a view to its gradual disappearance”, reflected in agreement no. 1507 of the Secretariat of the Central Committee of the PCC …

We can therefore conclude that:

Firstly: The private carriers were grouped in the defunct Fleet Operator, from where they offered their transport services, both to private individuals and companies, as well as the Central Administration of the State.

Secondly: That the Ministry of Transport secured, employing anticipated alleged technical violations and by way of a corrupt contract of sale, the compulsory purchase, with no voluntary aspect at all, of private sector trucks, resulting in the later nullification of these legal transactions.

Thirdly: That the State disguised its true intentions, aided by a false declaration of public necessity and social interest, when its real interest was to get rid of the private sector.

Fourthly: Today it remains clear that this sector represents a great public utility and is in the social interest, as the state has had to turn to the private carriers in order to sort out the situation with the transport of passengers and goods on a national level.

Therefore it would be good to get a reply to the question in the title: Compulsory purchase: Why and what for?

Translated by GH

26 August 2013

Emigration / Cuban Law Association, Noel Rodriguez Ávila

Lic. Noel Rodríguez Ávila

From an economic point of view Cubans have come to feel that they lack a future, it has been more than five decades and they have seen no fruits of their labors, which don’t even meet their basic needs of housing, food, clothing and a job with a decent wage.

The loss of motivation to study careers requiring a technical or university education comes from there being no economic advantage, nor even jobs to fill with these qualifications. The insecurity makes people look to the future and old age with fear.

There is no hope of prosperity. Every discourse has a political focus, with regards to the economy they only talk about working and being productive, about control and demands, not of new factories or investments or more employees. They talk about a primitive agriculture, subsistence level. An educated people can’t accept these miserable proposals.

Religious freedom is tolerated, but the system doesn’t like it. There is a lack of freedom of expression.

Cuban people are taught to watch each other, there’s a paranoia about being heard and being informed on to the authorities.

The State’s organizational structure is designed to convince us that all is well, or to understand what is wrong by looking for external causes, or in lower level management and not at the strategy of the higher ups who re never wrong. This limits the possibility of changes, all this is integrated into every Cuban citizen leading to a frustrated frustrated, hopeless personality, faking it, with no exit, looking abroad for an option, a hope.

The aspiration of every professional is to go on an international mission to earn a little money, have a house, buy a car, and have some comforts; when they can’t achieve it they want to leave even more to get away from their family, their country.

Emigration to the United States has also been an option, although risky, sad and cruel, when people use any kind of floating artifact to get to that country, to embrace a hope for prosperity and to help their family who with anguished hope said the magic words, “arrive safely” and then, gratefully, receive remittances that alleviate their economic stress.

In any event, the solution for Cubans is not outside, but within.

5 June 2013

Indoctrinate or Instruct? / Cuban Law Association, Noel Rodríguez Ávila


Lic. Noel Rodríguez Ávila

Now they aren’t applying themselves to instruct, only to indoctrinate. Education is entirely the responsibility of the family, as the fundamental cell of society.

José Martí stated that “education is depositing in the child all of humanity’s culture, to put him in tune with his times, and, in return, he contributes to the education of other people.

Our educational system has deteriorated badly, both from the point of view of the teacher and of the student, as a result of trying out different methods and styles in order to perfect it

An example of this is the compressed courses for “emergent teachers”*; of which there are an increasing number because of the scarcity of teachers and professors in primary and secondary education, largely because of the some of them retiring and others emigrating, which is happening due to educational disengagement, with people moving to other sectors of the economy looking for better pay.

It has been a policy mistake to try to instruct and educate kids and young people using methods which minimise the role of the teacher or professor, such as using television and video classes, reducing the level of review; in the end insisting that everyone has to pass their grade, no matter what their level of intelligence, so that “regular” has to become “good,” and good or very good has to become “excellent.”

If we sow poor seed we cannot expect good fruit.

*Translator’s note: The “Emergent Teachers” program took high school age students and fast tracks them to a teaching career. After poor results, including the death of at least one student at the hand of an “emergent teacher,” the program was scaled back.

Translated by GH
2 May 2013