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The official statement of the Liberation Party on the winning candidate was José María Figueres-Olsen with about 39% of votes.
- Liberación Nacional party photo -

Published Monday, June 7, 2021

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

On Sunday, a large number of Costa Ricans participated in the gathering for members of the Partido Liberación Nacional, to choose one of the candidates who will compete for the position of president of the country in the next elections that will be held from July 23 to August 8, 2021

The party, founded in 1951, is commonly known as PLN and defined itself as a social-democratic political organization.

The voting process ended at 6 p.m. The official statement of the Liberation Party on the winning candidate was José María Figueres-Olsen with  39% of votes, about 43.800 votes.

Figueres is son of former president José Figueres-Ferrer, who was in charge on three occasions: from 1948 to 1949, from 1953 to 1958 and from 1970 to 1974.

Figueres was also President of the country from 1994 to 1998. His mother is Karen Olsen Beck, a U.S. citizen who later adopted Costa Rican nationality. 

In Costa Rica, the political parties choose how the presidential candidate will be elected. The PLN party decided to carry out a gathering as it has traditionally been doing, where public school classrooms were used to allow hundreds of Costa Rican to vote for the candidate that will run in the next presidential campaign.

The convention was allowed by health authorities, despite the high risk of contagion of covid-19 that they also have been warning. The Ministry of Health reported on Friday a total of 75,921 active covid-19 cases in the country.

However, the party set up 923 voting centers in public schools throughout the country that were open to receive voters from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. All locations followed sanitary measures to prevent further covid infections. They had sinks, gel alcohol hand sanitizers in every classroom and applied the 6 feet social distancing rule, among others, according to PLN.

The rest of party presidential candidates were:

Rolando Araya-Monge, the nephew of former president Luis Alberto Monge (who was in charge from 1982 to 1986). This was the third time that Araya-Monge ran for president, the previous two were in 1993 and 2002, losing both times.

Carlos Ricardo Benavides- Jiménez, a current deputy in Congress. He was president of Congress from 2019 to 2020.

Roberto Thompson-Chacón is currently a deputy in Congress. He was the Mayor of the Alajuela Canton. He was also Vice Minister of the Presidency from 2006 to 2010.

Claudio Alpizar -Otoya, a director and producer of radio and television.

What would you consider to be the biggest challenge for the next president of Costa Rica? We would like to know your thoughts on this story. Send your comments to


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