The Economic and Social Council
The Constitution also provides for the establishment of the Economic and Social Council, which advises the president on issues of an "economic or social character." In 1988 the council had forty-five members, all of whom were selected by the president for five-year terms from among those members of the elite most concerned with economic development and social change. By the late 1970s, membership included the leaders of the growing commercial and industrial sector. With the exception of its president, who was named by the president of the republic, the council elected officers and distributed its members among various standing committees with discrete areas of responsibility. In 1986 Houphouët-Boigny named Philippe Yacé to head the council. Although the president was obligated to consult with the council on all matters within its competence, the council could also offer unsolicited opinions pertaining to economic development on all laws, ordinances, and decrees. Moreover, on its own initiative, the council could direct the president's attention to any economic or social issue.
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