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The time a leader devotes to building grassroots ties is well spent


Diaz CienfuegosMiguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez, President of Cuba’s Councils of State and Ministers, emphasized that among its priorities, the government must continue to insist on strengthening cadre policy.

Upon concluding the recent government visit to Cienfuegos, the Cuban President stressed the idea that an intelligent, purposeful perspective must be maintained in selecting leaders who have a clear disposition to work and sensitivity to the population’s problems, who think about the country as a whole, and promote dynamic action at the vital municipal level.

“This is important for the present and the immediate future, because to the same degree that the Constitution, to be approved by the people February 24, affords municipalities more autonomy, this is where government work must be developed. Thus, far from weakening it, we want to constantly strengthen the municipality,” he said.

He insisted to Cuban leaders – not only those present, but all, in whatever position or context – that they “continue seeking ties with the grassroots. This is the most advantageous way for cadres to use our time. This is where we get the truth, if we take advantage of it; if we do not tire of asking, to find out what’s happening, where dissatisfaction and shortcomings lie.”

He stressed “working with more intelligence and participation from the population, listening a great deal where there are problems, trying to avoid their accumulation.”

In the final meeting of the tour, where Díaz-Canel was joined by First Vice President Salvador Valdés Mesa; Lydia Esther Brunet, Party first secretary in Cienfuegos; and Mayrelis Pernía, president of the Provincial Assembly of People’s Power, the President also insisted on eliminating overdue accounts payable and receivable, defending national production, and capitalizing on all of the province’s great scientific potential.

He said that this was very broad visit, very strong in its representation of the province, during which different interests were addressed in a short period of time, and places visited with a view toward promoting programs and solving specific problems. He highlighted the way people greeted and welcomed him with joy, friendliness, discipline, enthusiasm, and much commitment.

“We are sure that Cienfuegos is going to continue advancing, that it will have a good 200th anniversary, and that residents of this province, like those throughout the country, will give a Yes vote for Cuba this coming February 24, when they give our Constitution a Yes,” he said.

During this meeting, Díaz-Canel also commented that the current year is one of special motivation in Cienfuegos, with a number of significant anniversaries, including not only the 200th of the city, but also the 40th of the Glucose Factory, the Provincial Hospital, and Carlos Rafael Rodríguez University.

He noted the city’s renovation and how emblematic sites have been revitalized, including the amusement park, and the Laguna del Cura, a moderately priced restaurant, offering good service in a family environment, adding, “Service providers have opened in Cienfuegos, and new spaces created, in which the maxim is followed that everything we do must be better than before.”

This concept was evident in the tour conducted the previous evening, when the President visited a number of well known commercial establishments, restaurants, and service providers, accompanied by the head of Domestic Commerce, Betsy Díaz Velázquez, and where he noted the attention paid to detail, calling on workers and management to maintain this culture, to ensure that “the population can continue to enjoy the lovely, varied offers.”


The Dr. Gustavo Aldereguía Lima Provincial Hospital has experienced a period of progressive physical deterioration and a decline in the quality of services, due, among other reasons, to overcrowding, given that infant-maternal services are provided here as well.Roberto Morales Ojeda, a vice president of the Councils of State and Ministers, noted that the Infant-Maternal Center – an annex under construction that would contribute to reducing crowding at the province’s most important medical facility – is “a project that has been delayed over time, that should have been completed some three years ago.”

Despite the urgent necessity, understood and supported, of concluding this project, the hospital’s new leadership team of young professionals has developed a series of measures, on the organizational and material fronts, that is having a positive effect.

After hearing about the action plan, Díaz-Canel expressed his confidence that the Gustavo Aldereguía Lima, founded by Fidel in 1979 and considered a reference by the Comandante en Jefe, given the quality of its services mentioned in several of his speeches, would once again be a model hospital.

The President toured the multi-purpose intensive care unit, the comprehensive heart center, and the intermediate care area, all with positive indices.

He asked about food services for patients, which have improved; called for taking better advantage of resources; and stressed that “analysis, and constant questioning are premises that lead to development, above all here, in such a significant sector, providing such a quality service to the population.”

The President was pleased to learn of the comprehensive work done to achieve an infant mortality rate of 2.67 per 1,000 live births, one of the lowest in the country, and zero maternal deaths, while he was informed that, as part of the structural rehabilitation of the building, blocks number four and eight have been completed.

He spoke with workers, patients, and visitors who conveyed their confidence, affection, and support, a scene that was repeated at every one of the sites he toured over the two days in the province.


President Díaz-Canel also visited the University of Cienfuegos, where he was accompanied by several ministers and, speaking with students and staff, emphasized the importance of strengthening ties between universities and different central state administration bodies, to work together to promote the nation’s economic and social development.

We are at a time when research can become innovation, in the service of local and national development, he stressed.

Once again, he insisted on making progress in the computerization of society, an effort to which universities can make an important contribution, he noted

Likewise, the participating ministers shared ideas related to projects underway and noted different arenas in which knowledge created at the university could be put to good use.

Students and professors in classrooms expressed their commitment to advancing along these new paths and supporting development in the province and nationally.

“Taking advantage of the experience of youth is vital,” Díaz-Canel said, acknowledging that young Cubans have more than enough ability to move the nation forward.

Modestly and frankly, the President spoke with students, as a father would with his children, with the certainty that their ideas are part of the nation’s foundation, as the Comandante en Jefe said, “When we speak of the university, we are talking about life.”


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