Wed. Jul 24th, 2024

The conservative Panamanian José Raul Mulino easily wins the presidency.

By triji May 6, 2024

The results of the presidential election in Panama were released on Sunday by the Electoral Tribunal. José Raul Mulino, who was the replacement for previous President Ricardo Martinelli and was the favorite in the polls, won the race with more than 34 percent of the vote, nine points ahead of his primary opponent, Ricardo Lombana (center right).

As a result, the poll favorite emerged victorious. The results of the presidential election in Panama were released on Sunday, May 5 by the president of the Electoral Tribunal. The winner of the race was José Raul Mulino, a conservative contender who succeeded Ricardo Martinelli, who had served as president from 2009 to 2014.

During a telephone call that was carried live on television, Alfredo Junca made the following announcement: “I have the pleasure, on behalf of the Electoral Tribunal, to inform you that (…) you have won the presidency of the Republic of Panama.”

More than 34 percent of the votes were cast for the attorney, who is 64 years old. This puts him nine points ahead of his primary rival. Former consul Ricardo Lombana, who ran for the center-right candidate, conceded that he was unsuccessful.

“Responsibility and humility” were the words that José Raul Mulino used to describe his reaction to these outcomes. It was during a speech that he made to his fans that he declared, “I am no one’s puppet.”

During this one-round election, three million Panamanians were given the opportunity to vote for their president, as well as to renew the 71 deputies of the unicameral Parliament and the regional governments. A simple majority outcome was required for the election.

A candidate for the office of former President Martinelli, José Raul Mulino
The former President Martinelli, who had been a contender for a second mandate but was detected by the courts and sentenced to 11 years in jail for money laundering, cast a shadow over this election. Martinelli was convicted of money laundering and sentenced to prison.

Additionally, the millionaire, who is 72 years old, is being prosecuted for unlawful wiretapping and corruption in connection with the mega-scandal that occurred at the Brazilian construction business Odebrecht.

Ricardo Martinelli, who has been unable to make an appearance, has appointed José Raul Mulino, his running mate for the vice presidency, as his successor. Martinelli has been taking cover in the Nicaraguan embassy with his dog Bruno since February 7.

According to the Martinelli mandate, José Raul Mulino served as Minister of Security. He also served as Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of Justice at the same time. After being detained in pre-trial detention for corruption during the years 2015 and 2016, he was eventually released due to procedural irregularities brought against him.

Ricardo Martinelli was waiting for José Raul Mulino at the Nicaraguan embassy when he arrived there after he had finished voting. According to a video that was released by the campaign team of the Realizando Metas (RM) party, which was established by Ricardo Martinelli, the two men greeted one other with a heartfelt hug and exchanged phrases such as “my brother” and “we will win.”

Rubén Blades, a well-known Panamanian salsa artist who is personally active in the campaign, made the following statement: “To prefer as president the direct representative of a fugitive convicted of corruption is to speak out in favor of cheating as a way of life and to publicly embrace corruption.” Blades is a candidate for the presidency.

The evolution of free falling

A deficit of 7.2% and a public debt of fifty billion dollars are two factors that are detrimental to the balance sheet of Laurentino Cortizo, who is leaving his position as president of the social democratic party.

According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the future president and his cabinet would have to contend with weak economic expectations, with growth decreasing from 7.3% in 2023 to 2.5% in 2024. This will be a very challenging situation for them. In the midst of environmental protests and debate regarding the concession deal, the largest open-cast copper mine in Central America was shut down, which resulted in the loss of thousands of jobs.

The Panama Canal, which is responsible for approximately 6% of the world’s marine trade, has been forced to restrict its traffic as a result of a drought. This drought has caused the freshwater supply lakes of the locks to be depleted, which raises questions about the canal’s ability to remain operational in the future.

According to a report published by the World Bank, Panama “remains one of the most unequal countries in the world,” despite the fact that it has one of the highest GDP per capita in Latin America.

By triji

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