Former president Figueres hitting the campaign trail in support of his party, "the best party".  Foto: PLN
Former president Figueres hitting the campaign trail in support of his party, “the best party”. Foto: PLN

He had intended to govern again, but desisted. He kept a distance from the presidential campaign and the Partido Liberación Nacional (PLN), Johnny Araya Monge. Now he is back, insisting that his party i the best to govern, but says he understands the civil unrest.

It was fourteen months ago when former president José María Figueres Olsen (1994-1998), hours before an adverse poll was published, that he threw in the towel, bowing out as a contender for the PLN party nomination and his bid to return to Casa Presidencial.

This weekend, however, he was back in the political arena. Figueres, surrounded by politicos close to him, visited the area of Los Santos, soliciting votes for the party.

It could be said that he was seeking for votes for Araya, but it is more correct to day he was there for the party, ensuring that Costa Ricans vote for the “verdiblanco” (green and white party), no matter who the candidate is.

With the entry of Figueres to Araya’s political campaign, the PLN candidate now has two former president in his corner. The other is Luis Alberto Monge (1982-1986) – Araya’s uncle on his mother’s side of the family.

Missing is the support of two time former president, Oscar Arias Sanchez. But that is entirely another story.

In an interview with La Nacion, asked why he decided to support Araya, he answered, “I do so with conviction. I always said I would support whomever the PLN chose, which is the best party, with all the respect to the other candidates”.

Figueres said that everyone one plays a small role in winning the election, and he is putting forth his small part and that every Costa Rican should take an active part in the political campaign.

The former president says that choosing the best party and leadership is more important than alternating parties in each election. (Up to the Chinchilla presidency, the PLN and PUSC party alternated governing the country.)

Asked if he was worried of the Villalta campaign and possible win, Figueres said “what makes me worry is that we stay stagnant and don’t make decisions”.


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