HAVANA, Cuba.- Laura Labañino, the daughter of Ramon, one of the Cuban Five, has two important things to do this Sundays: to congratulate her mother on her birthday and to exercise the right to vote, as her father requested her over the phone.
“I’m growing up,” Laura told ACN, referring to this first visit to the polls to elect a delegate in her constituency, but for her, growing is more than a biological event, it is also to become aware of the reality around her.
Ramon Labañino, one of the five Cuban antiterrorists unjustly incarcerated in the United States urged his daughter to get serious about this civic event as the moment in the country is crucial and needs the ratification of the revolutionary position from every Cuban, during a phone conversation from the McCreary penitentiary, in Kentucky.
“My dad was worried about the candidates in the constituency and their characteristics, and told me to assess well what was best for the community,” noted Laura.
Ramon explained that he called after the prison came from a “lockdown”, a as maximum security measure that closes completely the facility and imposes collective punishment, “for which my uncle and my grandfather could not visit him one weekend,” she said.
This girl, 17, told ACN she was proud to be among the more than 320 000 young people who will cast their ballots for the first time.
"In this election the Cuban people will set an example of total democracy, opposed to the lies of the U.S. and the European Parliament against Cuba,” Laura added.
Laura Labañino knows that this Sunday will be great for the country, when the pioneers guarding the ballot boxes and shout It voted!, because her ballot will carry her truth, that one that shows that young people grow up in the face of the blackmail of those who fear democracy in Cuba.