The Congress of Cúcuta (Congreso de Cúcuta) was an assembly led by Simón Bolívar and Francisco de Paula Santander, so to lead in a proper compromise between the centralists and federalists in the new Republic of Colombia, as well as establishing an attempt at proper union between the new nations. It resulted in partial success, resulting in a constitution that would end up being unwieldy for the Colombian nation and replaced nine years later.
List of Attendants
- Francisco de Paula Santander (presiding)
- Camilo Torres Tenorio (vice-presiding)
- José María Córdova
- José María del Castillo
- Jorge Tadeo Lonzano
- José Antonio Páez
- José Fernández Madrid
- Joaquín Mosquera
- José María Obando
- Simón Bolívar (presiding)
- Antonio Nariño (vice-presiding)
- José Miguel Pey
- Manuel Benito de Castro
- Domingo Caycedo
- Rafael Urdaneta
- Jerónimo de Mendoza
- Juan García del Río
- José Ignacio de Márquez
more to come..
The chief thing accorded after the Congress of Cúcuta was the Constitution of 1821, which was able to provide a stable government for Colombia until the Medellín Constitution came into effect. The Cúcuta constitution importantly layed out several important points;
- The establishment of the Republic of Colombia (República de Colombia), a union between Venezuela, Ecuador and New Granada, and opening entrance vaguely to new possible states.
- The new state will establish a federalistic structure, with provinces retaining some local authority in regards to government form and economy.
- Slavery will be outlawed progressively; any slaves will be free after age 30, slaves' children will reach freedom at age 21, and slave trade will be outlawed.
- The Inquisition will end; Catholicism will no longer be the official religion of Colombia and free cult shall be allowed.
- The Government will be popular and representative, but only those affiliated with the federalist cause can be chosen for civil status. The centralists shall be given power over the military.
- Democratic power shall compose of a President, elected by universal suffrage, and a vice-president, elected by the president.
- The military will add the ranks of Lord Marshall and Lord Admiral (Señor Mariscal and Señor Admiral), hereditary positions named for the leaders of the Centralist cause.
- The Legislative branch would be decided by a bicameral one composed of Senate and the House of Representatives. Four delegates shall be chosen per state for the Senate.
- Governments shall be allowed their own assemblies as well as gaining an appointed Intendant and a chosen Governor.
The Constitution was approven by a clear majority of twelve against six, with support being in general more popular amongst the Federalists rather than the centralists. The constitution took effect on January 1, 1822, and was ratified by the newly-created Senate with 9 in favour and 3 against. The constitution also had a positive vote in assemblies in Guayaquil (35 against 22).
Change for the 1830 Constitution
By the end of the War of the Brazil, it became clear for the Federalists that the constitution had several problems in its composition; heaviest among them, the sheer control that Centralists, a political idea, had over the nacional army. They feared that this could cause a coup d'etat and that the Federalist cause would lose all of its power. Camilo Torres, the president throughout the war, fervently denied any changes to the 1821 constitution, and the proposal was stalled until after the election and his death by natural causes in October 30, 1830, after which more pro-military José María Córdova ordered a new congress.