Ex-presidential candidate and former San José Mayor Johnny Araya last Saturday officially announced his bid to run again for mayor, but with a different political party.
Araya will run for mayor under the Alliance for San José Party in the Feb. 7, 2016 election, after his failed attempt to do so with the formerly ruling National Liberation Party (PLN).
A PLN ethics committee banned Araya from participating in political activities for a period of four years as a result of his decision to drop out of Costa Rica’s presidential race on March 5 of last year.
Araya, who ran the capital’s municipality for 22 years, said his goal is “to give San José a new direction,” mostly by resuming projects such as the improvement of the Municipal Police and other public services.
He also said he will go door-to-door “to touch the hearts of the people of San José.”
Paula Vargas, wife of Costa Rican Renovation Party lawmaker Gonzalo Ramírez, and Mario Vargas, a municipal official, will join Araya as vice mayoral candidates.
Paula Vargas said the party mostly brings together members of the Costa Rican Renovation Party, the National Restoration Party, and former members of the Social Christian Unity Party and the ruling Citizen Action Party.
In a speech to accept the nomination, Araya said he would present a campaign platform in about three weeks.