Right-Wing Party Declares ex-President Tony Saca as 2014 Presidential Candidate


Although the country’s Legislative and Municipal elections are right around the corner in March 2012, El Salvador's right-wing political parties are thinking ahead to the next presidential elections and how to take back the Executive branch from the leftist Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front (FMLN), which carried the country’s first left head of state, Mauricio Funes, to office in March of 2009. One right-wing party has already named its 2014 candidate as Tony Saca, Funes’ predecessor, formerly of the right-wing Nationalist Republican Alliance (ARENA) party which held the presidency from 1989-2009.  

Since leaving office in 2009, former President Saca himself has been denounced for frivolously spending millions of state funds on Christmas parties and a “goodbye” tour, and his cabinet members have been charged with gross mismanagement of government funds.The Saca Administration also ushered in the US-Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) without allowing public consultation on the potential economic consequences of the agreement. CAFTA has severely damaged the country’s agricultural sector, required the criminalization of the country’s street vendors and provided the framework for transnational gold mining corporations to sue El Salvador for denying their permits to extract gold.The choice of Saca illustrates that the right-wing plans to continue the same policies of corruption and neoliberalism that have served the Salvadoran ruling class at the expense of the needs of the Salvadoran people for decades. Read on for translated excerpts from the Diario Co Latino article on Saca’s candidacy.

“The Great Alliance for National Unity (GANA) plans to participate in the presidential election of 2014, with former President of the Republic, Elías Antonio Saca, as the party's primary candidate. Guillermo Gallegos, deputy of the right-wing party, confirmed that they are beginning conversations with the ex-President to define his candidacy for the 2014 election, which would at the same time facilitate a unification of the country's right-wing to prevent an FMLN re-election.

Right now, GANA is confident in the candidacy of ex-President Saca, "including that there are people who voted for the FMLN and today are wishing that ex-President Saca was President". Gallegos reiterated that either alone or in coalition, GANA will promote the candidacy of the former president.”

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