San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

López Seeks San José Mayor’s Office

Last fall he was aiming to become the country’s first blind president; now he wants to be the Costa Rican capital city’s first blind mayor.

Oscar López, best known for his work in the Legislative Assembly and for starting the Accessibility Without Exclusion Party (PASE), announced his mayoral ambitions Monday.

He will challenge San Jose’s current mayor, Johnny Araya of the National Liberation Party, in municipal elections Dec. 5.

López was not available for comment, but his party leader in the Legislative Assembly, Víctor Emilio Granados, told The Tico Times, “We think he’s a candidate that brings all the qualities.”

Granados said López’s campaign will focus on three areas: making the city more amiable for everyone – especially the disabled, making San José more environmentally friendly, and introducing a change in attitude among the people.

“We will work in these three areas, where we believe the city is lacking,” Granados said.

López, 39, who has been blind since birth, achieved broad support during his four years as legislator. Although his presidential bid was unsuccessful, his party gained four seats in the Legislative Assembly.

No other candidate has yet announced intentions to run for San José’s mayorship.

–Chrissie Long

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