Cyprus is an independent, sovereign Republic with a presidential system of government. Under the 1960 Constitution, executive power is vested in the President of the Republic, elected by universal suffrage to a five-year term of office.
The President of the Republic
The executive power exercised by the President inter alia consists of matters such as:
- determining the design and color of the flag of the Republic
- creation or establishment of the honors of the Republic
- appointment of the members of the Council of Ministers
- promulgation by publication in the official Gazette of the Republic of the decisions of the Council of Ministers
- promulgation by publication in the official Gazette of the Republic of any law or decision passed by the House of Representatives
- institution of compulsory military service
- reduction or increase of the security forces
- convening the meetings of the Council of Ministers, presiding at such meetings and taking part in the discussions thereat without any right to vote
- preparing the agenda of such meetings
- right of final veto on decisions of the Council of Ministers concerning foreign affairs, defense or security
- right of final veto on laws or decisions of the House of Representatives concerning foreign affairs, defense or security
- right of return of decisions of the Council of Ministers
- ight of final veto on laws or decisions of the House of Representatives concerning foreign affairs, defense or security
- right of return of laws or decisions of the House of Representatives or of the Budget
- right of recourse to the Supreme Constitutional Court
- right of reference to the Supreme Constitutional Court.
The President exercises executive power through a Council of Ministers appointed by him. The Ministers may be chosen from outside the House of Representatives. The President of the Republic of Cyprus is Mr. Tassos Papadopoulos, who was elected in the presidential elections of February 2003.
Former Presidents of the Republic of Cyprus
Archbishop Makarios III: He was elected in 1959 and re-elected in 1968 and in 1973 .He served as President until his death in 1977.
Spyros Kyprianou: After the death of President Makarios in 1977, he assumed duties temporarily. He was re-elected in 1978 and in 1983 and served as President until 1988.
George Vassiliou: He was elected in 1988 and served as President until 1993.
Glafcos Clerides: He was elected in the presidential elections of 1993 and was re-elected in 1998. He served as President of the Republic until February 2003.
2003 Presidential Elections - On 16 February 2003, Presidential Elections took place for the election of the new President of the Republic of Cyprus. In the 2003 Presidential Elections, 476.352 registered voters had the right to vote. The percentage of attendance at the elections was 90, 55%. The names of the candidates and the political parties which supported them were the following: Tassos Papadopoulos (AKEL, DIKO, KISOS, Ecological Environmental Movement) Glafcos Clerides (DISY, EDI, ADIK) Nicos Koutsou (NEW HORIZONS) Alecos Markides (KEA) The rest of the candidates were not supported by any political party. Mr. Tassos Papadopoulos was elected to the post of President of the Republic with 213.353 votes or 51, 51% of the valid votes. He gave his affirmation before the House of Representatives on 28 February 2003.
President of the Republic - Tassos Papadopoulos Tassos Papadopoulos was born in Nicosia in January 1934. He studied law in London (Gray’s Inn, Barrister-at-Law). He took active part in the EOKA liberation struggle as head of the Nicosia Section and later on as general head of PEKA - the political section of EOKA. He took part in the London Conference in 1959 and was one of the two delegates (besides the AKEL delegates) who voted against the signing of the London and Zurich Agreements. He was also one of the four representatives of the Greek Cypriot side at the Constitutional Commission which drafted the Constitution of the Republic of Cyprus. For 12 years he served successively as Minister of the Interior, Minister of Finance, Minister of Labor and Social Insurance, Minister of Health and Minister of Agriculture and Natural Resources. He served as advisor to the first representative of the Greek Cypriot side in the intercommunal talks, Mr. Glafcos Clerides, until April 1976 and subsequently he took up that post himself, serving until July 1978. He represented Cyprus at many international conferences, particularly the annual congresses of the International Labor Organization (ILO). Furthermore he represented the Greek Cypriot community in many recourses by Cyprus filed at the United Nations and the Council of Europe; until his election he practiced law in Nicosia. At the Parliamentary elections held on 15 July 1970 he was elected member of the House of Representatives, standing as an Eniaion (Unified Party) candidate for the Nicosia constituency. Standing as an independent candidate, he was re-elected in the election of 5 September 1976. From April until October 1976 he served as President of the House of Representatives. In the 19 May 1991 parliamentary elections he was elected member of the House of Representatives, standing as a candidate for the Democratic Party in the Nicosia constituency. He was re-elected on 26 May 1996. On 7 October 2000, he was elected unopposed President of the Democratic Party during the historic electoral congress at which the founder of the Party, Spyros Kyprianou, stood down. At the 27 May 2001 elections he was re-elected at the head of the Democratic Party ticket. He was a member of the National Council, Chairman of the Standing Parliamentary Committee on European Affairs and member of the Committee on Selection and the Committee on Financial and Budgetary Affairs. He was also Co-chairman of the Joint Cyprus-EU Parliamentary Committee. He is married and has four children.
The Government Spokesman - The Government Spokesman is responsible for expressing the Government policy on the Cyprus problem as well as on issues of internal government policy. He is essentially entrusted with the task of interpreting and promoting the policy of the government and coordinating the enlightenment activities of the Press and Information Office. In the framework of his duties, the Government Spokesman briefs, on a daily basis, the political editors of the mass media. In addition, the Government Spokesman briefs the foreign press correspondents permanently based in Cyprus, periodically and depending on the developments in the Cyprus problem. He also briefs foreign journalists who visit Cyprus.
- The Ministry of Foreign Affairs
- The Ministry of Finance
- The Ministry of Interior
- The Ministry of Labor and Social Insurance
- The Ministry of Defense
- The Ministry of Justice and Public Order
- The Ministry and Education and Culture
- The Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism
- The Ministry of Health
- The Ministry of Communications and Works
- The Ministry of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environment
Source: Press And Information Office, Republic Of Cyprus, 2005