By Cecilia Juambeltz
Today, Uruguay celebrates the 183rd anniversary of its first Constitution. This is a special day for Uruguayans like myself as we take a look back at our history and think about how much we have moved forward. A recent visit to Egypt, a country so different from mine, gave me a new perspective on how valuable it is for a country to respect fundamental human rights and how important stability is to a democratic system. In Uruguay such stability is a result of years of hard work and forward-thinking from many men and women who believe in the Rule of Law as a guiding principle. Although not without its share of problems, for nearly 200 years the South American country has relied on a strong and respected body of laws to support its economy and a progressive stance towards social development. So July 18th is also a day to be grateful for.
Uruguay´s first Constitution
The Constitution of 1830 marked the culmination of the emancipation process that started 20 years before and the beginning of an independent life in the territory that is today known as Uruguay. Our first Constitution, which had strong French and North American influences, established liberal ideas, and stated personal rights and the distribution of powers. It was a symbol of order and the assurance of a civilized life. It was above the warlords and political parties. However, it also had, in the light of our contemporary vision, some negative aspects. Read More »