Democracy and rights
Freedom House describes São Tomé and Príncipe
as a free country whose rulers show respect for
citizens' political and social rights. The judiciary is
grappling with corruption and lack of competence among
Multiparty systems prevail and voters have several
political parties to choose from. The elections are
usually referred to as free and fair. However, a
democratic challenge is that the parties are strongly
linked to individuals and families belonging to the
country's political elite. Power struggles between them
Offers a comprehensive list of airports in Sao Tome and Principe, including international airports with city located, size and abbreviation, as well as the biggest airlines.
Women are under-represented in the country's
legislative assembly. During the 2010 century, the
proportion of women in Parliament remained steady at 18
percent. It is nevertheless an improvement over the
decade before when the proportion of women in the
legislative assembly was between 2 and 9 percent.
Receiving and giving bribes is punishable, but police
and other officials involved in corruption are rarely
convicted of bribery. However, according to Transparency
International's corruption statistics, São Tomé and
Príncipe have gradually become less corrupt in recent
years and in relation to most neighboring countries, the
country is good. In 2018 and 2019, São Tomé and Príncipe
were ranked 64th out of 180 in the organization's index
of corruption in the world (see the full list here).
Freedom of expression and media
Freedom of the press and opinion guaranteed by the
Constitution is also respected by the country's rulers
in reality. The social debate is open and regime
criticism is tolerated. São Tomé and Príncipe are not
included in Reporters but the boundaries index of
freedom of the press in the world.
Judicial system and legal security
The legal system is built according to Portuguese
designs. The highest legal body is the Supreme Court,
whose members are appointed by the National Assembly.
There is also a constitutional court to ensure that the
country's laws are in accordance with the constitution.
The death penalty has been abolished.
One problem is that many officials in the justice
system have inadequate training. In addition, most are
low-paid, making them susceptible to corruption. The
police force has also become known for taking bribes.
The lack of educated judges means that many prisoners
sit in prison for long periods without trial, sometimes
more than a year. The conditions in the country's only
prison are harsh with congestion, poor food, poor
medical care and poor ventilation in the high heat.