By James Blears
Luis Arbinader`s victory, as Candidate of the Modern Revolutionary Party, breaks the 16 year ruling cycle of the Dominican Liberation Party.
It's candidate, former Public Works Minister Gonzalo Castillo, and former President Leonel Fernandez of the Peoples Force Party in a distant third place have already conceded defeat.
Outgoing President Danilo Medina was not allowed under the Constitution to run for a third consecutive term. All of them have congratulated Abinader and wished him well plus every success. He'll be inaugurated on August 16th.
Although Luis Arbinader has never held elected office, he`s well equipped for the job. A trained economist who studied at Harvard and Dartmouth College in the United States, his family are hotel owners and work in tourism. It`s a major industry and significant money earner in the Dominican Republic and has been very hard hit by the Pandemic.
It's in urgent need of expert economic resuscitation and practical know how. The country has been lambasted by Covid with the current Government being criticized for not encouraging lockdown early enough and of restarting normal life too soon last month.
On June 11th, Luis Arbinader and wife Raquel announced they'd tested positive for Covid so they had to suspend their campaign and isolate for weeks. They know only toowell about the perils of Coronavirus.
The Dominican Republic shares the island of Hispanola with Haiti, which is the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere.
In his final election rally Arbinader said of the ruling party: "Change is coming and the PLD is going." It`ll soon be time for him to show just exactly what that change is, on the long road to recovery in every sense of the word.