Governmental System, 1977-93
Under the constitution that took effect in 1979, all political activity, in particular that regarding the formulation and debate of policy, was conducted under the auspices of the Front. The party constitution was attached as a supplement to the national constitution. The president, as head of state and commander in chief of the armed forces, was nominated by the national congress of the SPPF and stood for election on a yes-no basis. All Seychellois aged seventeen or older could vote. The president served a five-year term and could be elected no more than three times in succession.
The constitution provided few checks on executive powers. The president appointed a cabinet without review by the People's Assembly. The latter consisted of twenty-three members elected for four-year terms from twenty-three constituencies, plus two members named by the president to represent the inner and outer islands. The president appointed the chair of the assembly. The SPPF selected candidates for assembly seats. In some constituencies, only one candidate was nominated, but in others the voters could choose from as many as three SPPF nominees. The legislature exercised no independent role, simply enacting into law bills proposed by the executive branch. Debates on issues occurred and were reported in the media, but criticism of the president or the government was not tolerated.
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