Wednesday 23 June 2021

Abel Pacheco Assures: “The First Contract Was Something Else”

  • Former President Pacheco says current contract is a “barbarity”
  • The original contract he signed was “something else entirely different”

The concession contract for the San José – San Ramón road reconstruction goes back a few years to the Abel Pacheco (2002-2006) administration, when the then president signed the first concession contract.

pachecoIt was during this time that the Consejo Nacional de Concesiones (CNC) –  National Concessions Council – awarded the contract to Autopista del Valle, who later would assigned the contract to the OAS, alleging difficulties in obtaining financing for the project.

Speaking with, Pacheco said he does not remember the details of the contract that bears his signature except that it was “something completely different than that agreed with the Brazilian company, OAS”.

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In the interview, the former president said it was his Transport minister, Ovidio Pacheco (no relation to don Abel) – at the time of the signing – who worked out the details of the concession. Don Abel said he called on his former minister, who was in the post only six weeks and his successor,  and says he does not remember the details.

Ovidio was followed by Randall Quirós.

“Well, I remember Ovidio was the one who had the contracts and Randall spoke of them and yes, as President and not a specialist in the field, it seemed to it was good…But of course what I’m seeing today is a total ‘barbaridad’ (barbarity), and is nothing like the other contract (the one he signed)”, Pacheco told

Pacheco emphasized that the persons who would know more on the subject is Randall Quiros and Karla González, who followed Quiros as Transport Minister in the Arias administration (2006-2010).

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“No, no, no. I repeat that it was something else entirely different. The cost was an amount that would be ridiculous today; the cost was less than half and for half of the years, but Randall has a very clear mind. Why do you not ask him?”, were the final words in the interview.

The signing page of the original contract back in 2004.  Image

The current concession contract with OAS is for US$530 million dollars and for a term of 30 years. The current Transport Minister, Pedro Castro and Presidenta, Laura Chinchilla, have come under fire for signing the agreement with the Brazilian firm, a and opponents allege improprieties.

With notes from

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