PUSC Members Show Allegiance To Calderón

August 19, 2005

FORMER President Rafael Ángel Calderón (1990-1994) may not have been able to attend the national assembly of his Social Christian Unity Party (PUSC) last weekend because he is under house arrest, but his presence was certainly felt.As assembly attendees selected the Unity candidates for the February 2006 Legislative Assembly elections, most showed their allegiance to Calderón by choosing his supporters’ desired candidates rather than those chosen by presidential candidate Ricardo Toledo, the daily La Nación reported.Not one of the 25 candidates chosen at the two-day assembly is within Toledo’s circle. Toledo was so frustrated by this outcome that on Saturday, rumors surfaced that he would resign as the party’s candidate, according to the daily. He left the assembly suddenly Saturday afternoon but later told the press he was not resigning.Calderón is serving a preventive detention order while facing allegations of corruption related to a government contract to modernize the nation’s public hospitals (TT, Oct. 22, 2004).After the results of Unity’s weekend assembly, Toledo fired the members of his campaign team, many of whom hoped to become legislators. One of those fired was Toledo’s communications and image director Belisario Solano, a former Unity legislator who aspired to be legislator again for the province of Cartago (TT, Feb. 4).During Solano’s legislative term, he allegedly accepted more than $1,000 from residents of a community to repave a street that was subsequently repaved with government resources. The incident is still under investigation.

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