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  • President Nayib Bukele during a swearing-in ceremony in San Salvador, El Salvador, June 1, 2019.

    President Nayib Bukele during a swearing-in ceremony in San Salvador, El Salvador, June 1, 2019. | Photo: Reuters

Published 1 June 2019

The new Salvadoran president vowed to govern for all without favoring any political persuasions or social classes.

Nayib Bukele took the mantle of president of El Salvador Saturday for the 2019-2024 term in a ceremony held at Gerrardo Barrios Square in the capital city of San Salvador. Bukele was sworn in before Legislative Assembly President Norman Quijano, who later bestowed him with the presidential sash before hundreds of special guests.

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"I have been inaugurated as President of the Republic. From now on, I will not be the president of one sector, I will not be the president of those who voted for me, I will not be the president of a political party. I will be the president of all," Bukele said.

The 37-year-old businessman, who won the February presidential elections with 53 percent of the vote, succeeds President Salvador Sanchez, a former guerrilla commander and historic figure of the Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front (FMLN).

The current president is the founder of the "New Ideas" party and the youngest president in the history of the Central American nation. Previously he was mayor of Nuevo Cuscatlan y San Salvador.

After three decades in which the FMLN and Nationalist Republican Alliance (Arena) took turns being in power, Bukele and his party will have to tackle problems such as widespread violence, corruption, and polarization in the country.

During his presidencial campaign, Bukele said his government will create conditions to prevent those problems.

"More than 160 municipalities have been declared 'illiteracy free' in El Salvador. One decade won, FMLN proudly." The meme reads, "thanks to the FMLN, the greatest social investment in El Salvador's history was achieved."

To that end, he vowed that his presidency will provide opportunities for at-risk young people to stay away from street gangs. In addition to improving the conditions under which public security forces operate, he said that reintegration into society for former gang members will also be a priority.

These challenges, however, will not be easy to achieve. El Salvador was classified by international organizations as the world's most violent country in 2018 based on its rate of homicides and violent deaths.


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