Angola – New constitution: three choices

In Angola the constitution-making process is moving forward. The Constitutional Commission of the National Assembly has arrived at three constitutional choices between which the people of Angola must choose. Specifically, there is now a period of popular reflection, then there will be a final choice by the Assembly, and then there will be a referendum.

The three choices are labelled A, B and C: A is the presidential choice; B is the semi-presidential choice; C is being called ‘presidentialist-parliamentary’ choice (though Matthew Shugart should sue for libel!).

The parliamentary website has lots of information (in Portuguese) as well as a diagram that tries to sum up the difference between the three choices. Here it is:

Basically, proposal A is a classic presidential system. Proposal B is a classic semi-presidential system, though (interestingly) it is being portrayed as a system in which the president has relatively few powers. (This is the reason why this option will not be chosen! At least, that is my cynical reading of the situation). As reported in a previous post, Proposal C is like the Guyanan system, whereby there is a single election and where the presidential candidates are the heads of the party lists. So, the party that wins the most votes wins the presidency.

My understanding is that the likely outcomes is between Proposals A and C.

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