Citizens of El Salvador have chosen a new politician to lead the country, ending three decades of control by two political parties.
Nayib Bukele, 37, held his wife’s hand and waved to crowds as Coldplay’s “Viva La Vida” boomed from the speakers. “This day is a historic day. This day, El Salvador destroyed the bipartisanship,” he said.
Nayib Bukele, former San Salvador mayor, was on Sunday elected president of El Salvador — crushing a two-party system in place since civil war ended in 1992.
With his sharp beard and youthful wardrobe — jeans, leather jackets and often a baseball cap — the 37-year-old put opponents from the country’s two largest parties out of style.
Bukele became a small-town mayor with FMLN in 2012, then was victorious in the capital’s mayoral election in 2015. He was expelled from the FMLN two years later for criticizing the party and now leads the small, conservative Grand Alliance for National Unity, or GANA, which means “win” in Spanish.
Polls predicted that Bukele was poised to win the presidential election. More than half of Salvadorans cast ballots for Bukele, ensuring that a runoff wouldn’t be needed.