CONSTITUTION AND GOVERNMENT. In 1839 the Central American Federation, which had comprised the states of Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua and Costa Rica, was dissolved, and El Salvador became an independent republic. Plans for a gradual federation with Guatemala were discussed between the presidents of both countries in March 1945. A new constitution came into force in 1950, superseding the 1886 constitution, with a strong bias towards social welfare. Legislative power is vested in a single chamber, the Legislative Assembly, consisting of deputies, elected for 2 years by universal suffrage, 1 for each group of 38,000 inhabitants. Large powers are vested in the President, whose term is for 6 years ; normally he cannot succeed himself. He has a cabinet of 10 members. In 1945 women were conceded a limited suffrage, but in 1950 universal male and female suffrage was introduced for the elections of the President and the Constituent Assembly.
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Books of Reference
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