Nayib Bukele, with a determination that seems practically utopian and in the midst of a despair ocean that surrounds traditional politics, has become a political phenomenon. The Salvadorian has done the unthinkable: to fulfill his promises.
Nayib Bukele is the true face of good politics. At only 33 years of age, this young entrepreneur San Salvador’s native became the Mayor of a small town in 2012, called Nuevo Cuscatlán.
Since his arrival to the mayor’s office and with a strong believe in his quote “when we invest in our people, progress is guaranteed,” Bukele managed to lower the crime rate to 0%, offered English scholarships to the students of the canton, created a project to provide food to the elderly, a new municipal clinic with attention 24/7, among many other projects of great social and economic impact.
While Nuevo Cuscatlán is a small rural town of 9,500 citizens, when the young politician arrived the small town emerged from anonymity and started to become a very peculiar phenomenon for a country like El Salvador, which involves many social problems. Among the distinctive facts, one that stands out is that the citizens of the town that once had migrated to the United States wanted to come back because they were attracted by the progress that began to sprout on their land.
Those lights shining through the dark Salvadorian panorama, made Nayib Bukele to be invited by the United Nations to give a speech on his successful management model. In summary, he discussed: eradicating corruption and making an efficient use of public funds to promote development.
However, not only the UN has put the spotlight on Bukele, the leading television networks had Nuevo Cuscatlán all over the headlines, the town that seemed to rise from the ashes with the help of one of the most popular and influential politicians in recent years in El Salvador.
The politic’s hero
His popularity made him became the new mayor of the Salvadorian capital, San Salvador, in March 2015. Winning a close election result with 48.4% of votes compared to 46.4% of its nearest competitor.
His arrival created an unusual phenomenon of popularity, rated by many as a “messianic image”, because citizens have begun to consider him a savior of politics and hope, hope that did not exist before due to the same political affairs.
In fact, it is not common to see in the streets of our countries, citizens all together with a certain fervor shouting with joy the name of a politician. Bukele did it, he managed to be the politician that the people admire. In October, 2015 once he had 170 days in office as San Salvador’s Mayor 94% of the citizens of the capital approved his management, according to the company Cid Gallup.
Mayor Bukele with so little time leading in the capital has developed the program “one project a day”, which has so far invested US $5 million; with 52 community projects out of the 1,000 projects planned for 2018.
Is it hard to believe?
Perhaps at this point is still hard to believe that a politician serves the people with honesty, no hidden agenda, without seeking political parties’ revenge, without white lies and without insatiable thirst for power.
Distrust justified by the long lists of political frauds that our countries have faced, to the point that we Latin Americans have come to the conclusion that corruption and bad politics are an endemic evil.
According to the Corruption Perceptions Index of Latin America developed by the NGO Transparency International (TI), corruption in Latin America is estimated to cost up to 7% of the regional GDP. The group Global Financial Integrity also estimates that the costs of corruption in the region could be up to US $142,920 million annually.
These data may explain the growing disinterest and the high level of abstention suffered by our countries. At the same time, success stories such as Nayib Bukele’s seem to indicate that there are ways to do good politics, the one that delivers what was promised and builds progress.
Especially now that our country is getting ready for the Municipal Elections, cases like this should encourage the interest of citizens in politics and the commitment of politicians with citizens.
Are you part of the population that stopped believing in the good politics? Do you think we can emulate this success story in our country? Let us know in the comments. We opened the debate with this article.