Local August 19, 2020 | 9:30 am

After 54 years, women rule again in the provinces of the DR

President Luis Abinader swore in yesterday 31 provincial governors during a ceremony at the National Palace together with Vice President Raquel Peña and other officials.

Santo Domingo, DR


President Luis Abinader yesterday became the second Dominican head of state to designate only women as provincial governors in the last 54 years.

Abinader once again broke a tradition of placing men as provincial governors, after the late president Joaquín Balaguer swore in 26 women in the 26 provinces’ governorships that existed when he triumphed in the elections of June 1, 1966, as a candidate for the Reform Party ( PR).

Balaguer expressed at the governors’ swearing-in ceremony on Wednesday, July 6, 1966, that he had decided due to the great support he received from women in the elections. That support allowed him to defeat his strong opponent, former President Juan Bosch, candidate of the Dominican Revolutionary Party (PRD).

More than five decades

Since then, Balaguer began the period known as “The 12 years” until 1978, when he was succeeded by Antonio Guzmán, and Jacobo Majluta (42 days), and Salvador Jorge Blanco, from the PRD, until 1986.

The reformist leader returned to government in 1986 for ten years until 1996, when he was replaced by President Leonel Fernández of the Dominican Liberation Party (PLD).

In 2000, President Hipólito Mejía triumphed as the PRD candidate. However, Fernández returned in 2004 and was reelected in 2008. Then he passed the torch to President Danilo Medina, also from the PLD, who triumphed in the 2012 elections and was reelected for the 2016-2020 period.

New governors

President Abinader swore in the 27 provincial governors this Tuesday afternoon, of the 31 that he had announced last July, in the middle of the transition process.

Through Decree 340-20, Martina Pepén Santana, governor of La Altagracia; Lisette Nicasio de Adames, in Hermanas Mirabal; Juana Cristina Mateo, in Bahoruco; Diones Maribel González Medrano, Barahona; Ana Xiomara Cortés Martes, Duarte province, and Millys Johanna Martínez, in Elías Piña.

Also Juana Rosario de Candelier, in Espaillat; Jacqueline Fernández Brito, in La Romana; Julia Mery Vásquez Pichardo, in Hato Mayor; Pura Casilla, in San Cristóbal; Luisa A. Jiménez Cabreja, in La Vega; Raquel Jiménez Rosario, in Monsignor Nouel, and Nelsi Milagros Cruz Martínez, in Monte Cristi.

Also, Rafaela Javier Gomera, in Monte Plata; Miriam Brea de González in Pedernales; Ángela Yadira Báez, in Peravia; Claritza Rochtt Peralta, in Puerto Plata; Elsa de León Abreu, in Samaná; Josefa Oliva Castillo de Peralta, in San José de Ocoa and Aracelis Villanueva Figueroa, in San Pedro de Macorís.

While Cristiana Rodríguez de Alba, will be the governor of Sánchez Ramírez; Rosa Santos Méndez, in Santiago; Altagracia Julia Drullard de Jiménez, in Santo Domingo; Daysi Aquino Mesa, in Valverde; Ángela Maruja Pérez Díaz in Azua; Ibelis Almonte, in Santiago Rodríguez, and Mercedes Nova Nova, in the Independencia province.

The swearing-in ceremony was held in the Los Embajadores room of the National Palace. Also present were the vice president Raquel Peña, and the ministers Lisandro Macarrulla, from the Presidency; José Ignacio Paliza, administrative officer of the Presidency; Mayra Jiménez, from Women, and Roberto Fulcar, from Education.

Role of governorates

The governors will represent the President of the Republic in their respective provinces or boundaries, as established by the Organic Law of Public Administration number 247-12. They are responsible for complying with a series of obligations conferred by Law number 2661 of Attributions and Duties of the Civil Governors of the Provinces, for the proper functioning of the granted province.

This Law of Powers and Duties of Governors was promulgated on December 19, 1950, during the dictatorial regime of Rafael Leónidas Trujillo. In other words, the new governors appointed by Abinader must take into account multiple responsibilities.


 Local female leadership

 The promise.

Abinader had announced through his Twitter account that in the 31 provinces of the country, he would appoint women as of August 16 and that local female leadership should be encouraged and promoted.

The triumph.

The president triumphed in the first electoral round with 52.52%, defeating Gonzalo Castillo, of the PLD, and putting an end to the PLD dynasty, which led the nation’s destinies since 2004.

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