San José, Costa Rica, since 1956
The World in Costa Rica

First Lady seeks a new role: Costa Rican citizen

First Lady Mercedes Peñas Domingo spent part of her weekend in a classroom, but not inaugurating a new project or attending a ceremony. She was taking a citizenship test.

“After 27 years living in Costa Rica, everything this country has given me, and all I have tried to give back to it; after a Costa Rican daughter, my partner, and the honor of representing you as First Lady, this weekend I took my exams for Costa Rican citizenship,” Peñas, who hails from Madrid, Spain, announced on Facebook.

President Luis Guillermo Solís praised his partner’s decision on his own social media profile.

Watch President Solís tell The Tico Times about his own family history of immigration.

“Those of us who are Costa Ricans and love Costa Rica are proud to call ourselves its daughters and sons,” he wrote. “But those who choose this country as their homeland of their own free will deserve twice the credit, because they do it consciously, not just because of the call of their blood or their land.

“This weekend Mercedes took her exams to obtain our citizenship. We celebrate this together and I’m filled with happiness at seeing that a person who for 27 years has lived among us and worked for the development of our territories and as First Lady, fully committed to Costa Rica, will now officially become a tica.”

Peñas Domingo holds degrees in political science and international relations and is a rural development specialist. She and Solís have one daughter together, Inés, born in 2006.

See also: The Alabama woman who became Costa Rica’s first lady

(Luis Guillermo Solís Rivera via Facebook)

Contact Katherine Stanley at kstanley@ticotimes.net

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