The new president of Costa Rica, Rodrigo Chaves, affirmed this past Sunday in his investiture speech that his government is called to “make a historic change” and pointed out a series of challenges that his country faces, such as poverty and unemployment.
“The moment we live in is crucial. We are the ones called to make a historic change. That call is imposed with the force of the voice of the people who demanded from the polls an enormous obligation to the entire political class of the country, which includes the three powers of the Republic,” Chaves said.
The President, who begins his 4-year term this Sunday, denied that the country is ungovernable and that what is urgent is “to make the decisions that are necessary regardless of how complex or controversial they may be.”
“The change that the country demands is not about an ambition or a personal project, but about the rescue of democracy and that commits all of us Costa Ricans,” he said.
Chaves made a diagnosis of the country pointing out the challenges to improve education, reduce poverty, fight crime and corruption. “Today we bravely face the imminent obligation to repair the country and fight with the conviction that God protects us and that it is only through the honest work of our hands and not through the indolent spirit of conformism, that we will be able to build a worthy homeland for our sons and daughters, we are not only going to tidy up the house, we are going to rebuild it,” said the President.
In his speech, the president also promised that his government will work to combat harassment and violence against women, and that the achievements in human rights, such as those of the LGBTI population, will be respected. Chaves asserted that “if the political class fails once again, the country could fall apart,” alluding to popular discontent with recent governments.
Strong and robust democracy
“This is a country whose soil has the capacity to feed us all, but it is also a country where hunger sits on the table of hundreds of thousands of people,” he said. Chaves also highlighted the democratic values of Costa Rica and the “strong and robust” institutions that it has built throughout its history, but criticized that in recent years many public entities “have failed to provide quality services or clean up the infamous ballast of corruption.”
Rodrigo Chaves Robles was sworn in this Sunday as the 49th president in the history of Costa Rica for a period of 4 years, in a ceremony held at the headquarters of the Legislative Assembly. Chaves, 60 years old and from the young Democratic Social Progress Party, was sworn in by the President of the Legislative Assembly, Rodrigo Arias Sánchez. First Vice President Stephan Brunner and Second Vice President Mary Munive were also sworn in at the ceremony, and he then swore in his cabinet.
The outgoing president Carlos Alvarado, who governed from 2018 to 2022, handed over the presidential sash and Chaves immediately received it, with which he was made official as President.