First Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba
Primer Secretario del Partido Comunista de Cuba
Incumbent
Miguel Díaz-Canel
since 19 April 2021
Central Committee
StyleComrade (formal)
TypeParty leader
Member ofCentral Committee, Politburo, Secretariat
SeatPalace of the Revolution
Havana, Cuba
AppointerCentral Committee
Term lengthFive years, renewable once
Constituting instrumentStatute of the Communist Party of Cuba
Formation18 August 1925; 98 years ago (1925-08-18)
First holderJosé Miguel Pérez
DeputySecond Secretary

The officeholder of the post of first secretary presides over the work of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Cuba (PCC), which is designated as "the organised vanguard of the Cuban nation" and as "the superior driving force of society and the State" by Article 5 of Cuba's constitution.[1] The PCC Central Committee, the Party's highest political-executive organ between convocations of the party congress, has the right to elect and dismiss the first secretary at one of its sessions. The first secretary is responsible for leading the work of the Secretariat, the Party's highest executive organ, and chairing the sessions of the Politburo, the Party's highest political organ. The current first secretary is Miguel Díaz-Canel, elected by the 1st Session of the 8th Central Committee on 19 April 2021, and he concurrently serves as president of Cuba.

The first forerunner organisation to the present-day PCC was formed on 18 August 1925, and it elected the Spain-born José Miguel Pérez as its leader. Due to repressive actions by the Cuban state of Gerardo Machado, Pérez was kicked out of the country thirteen days later, on 31 August.[2] This brought the newly-established party into turmoil, and José Peña Vilaboa took over Pérez's position and kept the position until his death on 13 March 1927. Due to his health struggles, Miguel Valdés García served as acting general secretary for most of Peña Vilaboa's tenure.[3] Valdés García continued to do so until April 1927, when Joaquín Valdés Hernández was elected general secretary.[3] State repression and bad organisation brought party work to a standstill until the Communist International (Comintern) appointed Jorge Abilio Vivó d’Escoto as party general secretary in 1930.[4] In August 1933, a general strike took place in Havana that called for Machado's removal. Vivó is said to have misjudged the revolutionary situation, and he was forced to step down on the Comintern's orders at the 2nd Congress, held on 20–22 April 1934.[5] Blas Roca Calderio was elected in Vivó's place and stayed in office until 24 June 1961 when the party merged with the 26th of July Movement and the Revolutionary Directorate of 13 March Movement to form the Integrated Revolutionary Organizations (IRO), which elected Fidel Castro as its first secretary.[6] The IRO was transformed into the United Party for the Socialist Revolution of Cuba (PURSC) on 26 March 1962. Three years later, on 3 October 1965, the PURSC convened the 1st Congress of the newly-established Communist Party of Cuba. The 1st Central Committee, which had been elected by the 1st Congress, convened for its 1st Session on 3 October 1965 and elected Fidel as first secretary.[7] He remained in office for 49 years until the convocation of the 1st Plenary Session of the 6th Central Committee on 19 April 2011, which elected his brother Raúl Castro to succeed him in office.[8] Raúl remained in office for two electoral terms and was succeeded by Miguel Díaz-Canel on 19 April 2021.[9]

Institutional history

Institutional history of the highest-standing office of the Communist Party of Cuba
Title Established Abolished Established by Ref.
General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Cuba
Spanish: Secretario General del Comité Central del Partido Comunista de Cuba
18 August 1925 13 August 1939 1st Congress [10]
General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Revolutionary Communist Union
Spanish: Secretario General del Comité Central de la Unión Comunista Revolucionaria
13 August 1939 22 January 1944 Central Committee of the 3rd Congress [11]
General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Popular Socialist Party
Spanish: Secretario General del Comité Central del Partido Socialista Popular
22 January 1944 24 June 1961 4th Congress [12]
First Secretary of the National Directorate of the Integrated Revolutionary Organizations
Spanish: Primer Secretario de la Dirección Nacional de Organizaciones Revolucionarias Integradas
26 July 1961 26 March 1962 ?
First Secretary of the Central Committee of the United Party for the Socialist Revolution of Cuba
Spanish: Primer Secretario del Comité Central del Partido Unido para la Revolución Socialista de Cuba
26 March 1962 3 October 1965 ? [7]
First Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Cuba
Spanish: Primer Secretario del Comité Central del Partido Comunista de Cuba
3 October 1965 Present 1st Congress [2]

Officeholders

First secretaries of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Cuba
No. Officeholder Took office Left office Tenure Term Birth PM Death Ref.
1 José Miguel Pérez 18 August 1925 31 August 1925 13 days 1st
(1925–34)
1896 1925 1936 [2]
2 José Peña Vilaboa September 1925 13 March 1927 193 days years 1st
(1925–34)
1891 1925 1927 [3]
3 Joaquín Valdés April 1927 ? ? years 1st
(1925–34)
? 1925 ? [3]
4 Jorge Vivó 29 March 1930 22 April 1934 4 years, 24 days 1st
(1925–34)
1906 1927 1979 [13]
5 Blas Roca 22 April 1934 24 June 1961 27 years, 2 days 2nd–?
(1934–1961)
1908 1930 1987 [14]
6 Fidel Castro 26 July 1961 19 April 2011 49 years, 267 days PROV–5th
(1961–2011)
1931 1955 2016 [8]
7 Raúl Castro 19 April 2011 19 April 2021 10 years, 0 days 6th8th
(2011–21)
1931 1953 Alive [15]
8 Miguel Díaz-Canel 19 April 2021 Incumbent 2 years, 311 days 8th–present
(2021–present)
1960 1985 Alive [9]

See also

References

Books

  • Blaquier, Angelina Rojas (2005). El primer Partido Comunista de Cuba [The First Communist Party of Cuba]. Vol. 1. Editorial Oriente. ISBN 9789591104656.
  • Kapcia, Antoni (2022). Historical Dictionary of Cuba. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers. ISBN 9781442264540.
  • Portillo, Eloida Diana Kindelán (2017). "Política de alianzas del primer Partido Comunista de Cuba en la década de 1940" [Alliance policy of the first Communist Party of Cuba in the 1940s]. In Massón, Caridad (ed.). Laz Izquierdas Latinoamericanas: Multiplicidad y Experiencias durante el Siglo XX [The Latin American Left: Multiplicity and Experiences during the 20th Century]. Ariadna Ediciones. pp. 131–149. ISBN 979-10-365-0361-0.

Journal articles

  • Goldenberg, Boris (1969). "The Rise and Fall of a Party: The Cuban CP (1925–59)". Problems of Communism. 19 (4): 61–80.
  • Jeifets, Víctor; Jeifets, Lazar (2014). "La odisea roja. Varias líneas al retrato político de Jorge Vivó d'Escoto" [The Red Odyssey. Several Lines to the Political Portrait of Jorge Vivó d'Escoto]. Revista CS. 14: 155–188. doi:10.18046/recs.i14.1844. ISSN 2011-0324.

Web articles

Footnotes