The falling out between the two took place during a time when Martinelli was attempting to change the constitution, that he may be allowed to run for a third consecutive term. When Varela didn’t concur, Martinelli dismissed Varela from his additional position of prime minister.
President Martinelli may have thought he found away around leaving office. His wife, Marta Linares, became the running mate of leading candidate Jose Domingo Arias. Linares had not previously held an elected political seat, and her husband was much more active than herself in the campaigning. With fears of inflation and further corruption, public support didn’t lie behind Arias on the May 4, Election Day.
Supermarket mogul and previous president Martinelli can expect to be affected by the political change, as Varela has said he will price fix basic grocery staples. Under Martinelli, a gross amount of profit was being made on the most basic foods. Through price control, Varela expects to lower the cost of living by more than 600 million for the people of Panama.
The newly elected president wants to narrow the gap between the rich and the poor. Taking the approach of the south pacific moon goddess, if done right, Varela should be able to take any negative and make the results positive times three. Varela’s family owns the largest liquor company in Panama; may his trickle down effect fill the Panamanians glasses with nothing but cheer!