Sunday, May 25, 2008

Cuba has world's highest rate 100-year-olds

HAVANA (AFP) — About 1,800 Cubans are over 100 years old, making it the country with the highest rate of centenarians, an expert said Saturday.

Eugenio Selman-Housein, chairman of the 120 Years Club and previously head of former Cuban leader Fidel Castro's medical team, also said "life expectancy has gone up to almost 80 years" on the communist-run Caribbean island.

There are "currently about 1,800 Cubans registered as over a century old," he said, according to the National Information Agency.

This figure would make Cuba, which has a total population of 11.2 million, "the country that has the most centenarians per number of inhabitants in the world," Selman-Housein said.

He noted that reaching the grand old age of 100 in good health required motivation, first of all, but also "a diet rich in fruit and vegetables, physical activity, culture and the right atmosphere."

The 120 Years Club, created in 2003, promotes a style of living and eating that will help people live a long and happy life.

Cuba has 16.6 percent senior citizens -- more than 12 percent is considered high -- which represents more than 1.9 million elderly people, official figures show.

The oldest Cuban is a 122-year-old woman who lives in Granma, 760 kilometres (470 miles) southeast of Havana. Her identity has never been disclosed.



Blogger jsb said...

Another policy you've defended is being changed:

The [Cuban] government's policy is to eliminate the dual currency, which to some extent hurts the country's self-esteem, but we need a minimum quantity of monetary reserves for a normal exchange rate, prices and wages reform and greater economic efficiency," he [the head of the Cuban parliament's economic commission, Osvaldo Martinez] said.

I seem to remember you criticizing some old ladies who had gathered to protest the dual currency because you have no shame when it comes to being an apologist for fidelista policies. Thank goodness change is happening despite your propagandistic support over the years.

6:42 AM  
Blogger leftside said...

I never defended that policy either. Everyone knows the dual currency was a undesirable decision made only because of the economic crisis of the 90s. If I remember right, I criticized the the group protesting (FLAMUR) because of their Miami leadership.

11:58 AM  
Blogger jsb said...

Ha! Shoot the messenger. They were right, the fidelista policies you've been supporting are wrong. Like your support of a ban on cellphones and computers and the tourist apartheid that you defended.

Hey, are you still defending Castro's ban on MTV? ...or will you finally join me in calling for non-political programming to be allowed uncensored into the average Cuban's home?

1:47 PM  
Blogger leftside said...

As soon as the US gets rid of its TV and radio propoganda, I will support the ridding of the satellite restrictions. I have always said this. There is no place for tampering with communications signals as part of a regime change policy.

2:52 PM  
Blogger jsb said...

So you basically support keeping Cubans from seeing what's going on in the outside world. It's ok for you to watch what you want here in the states but you don't think Cubans are smart enough to choose for themselves what to watch. You know what that is? It's arrogance. It's believing you're better than them. It is occidental, colonial thinking.

6:42 AM  
Blogger jsb said...

Just so we're clear, and any students reading your blog will understand you, in addition to censoring MTV, Univision, you also support the filtering of the internet at public internet cafes in Cuba? (mostly cuban "intranet" anyway)

7:07 AM  
Blogger jsb said...

"Domestic Internet for the public does not exist but Internet cafes do, where Cubans can see an edited view of the Web."

I can't believe you would still support this kind of an information bubble that the dictatorship keeps in place. But then you supported all of fidel's policies in the past, so I suppose till Raul changes this, you'll continue to support it. Then you'll claim "I never supported that!", right?

7:09 AM  
Blogger leftside said...

AFP is simply wrong. Domestic intranet is widely available - there are millions of email addresses in Cuba and the intranet is available at neighborhood kiosks, post offices, schools and workplaces for low cost. As far as the international interent, here is what the anti-Cuba group Reporters Without Borders concluded when they tested the system:

The results were surprising: her report, released Thursday by Reporters Without Borders, says Internet cafes at hotels and the post office allowed mostly unfettered access to Web sites, even those considered "subversive."

"I was surprised I could visit all Web sites," the journalist - who used the pseudonym of Claire Voeux to write the report so she would be able to return to Cuba - said in a telephone interview from France.

12:36 PM  
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