Anti-corruption crusader Zuzana Caputova has created history by becoming Slovakia’s first female president after she defeated high-profile diplomat Maros Sefcovic, who was nominated by the governing party, in a second round run-off vote on Saturday. She secured 58 percent votes, while Sefcovic had to settle for just 42 percent vote share.
Aged 45, Caputova had fought her elections by declaring her contest between good and evil. Her victory in the elections assumes significance in light of the murder of an investigative journalist last year. Journalist Jan Kuciak was murdered with his fiancée in February 2018 as he set out to find links between politicians and organised crime.
Caputova, according to the BBC, said that the gruesome murder of Kuciak and his fiancée was the reason why she decided to run for the top job. In an interview with the New York Times earlier this month, Caputova had said, “People are feeling frustrated and disappointed and are yearning for change. Some candidates have chosen to exploit this fear — but for me, using the emotions of hatred and fear is destructive.”
“I am happy not just for the result but mainly that it is possible not to succumb to populism, to tell the truth, to raise interest without aggressive vocabulary,” news agency Reuters quoted her as saying while in conversation with reporters.
Caputova, who has no previous experience in administration has now become the 20th female head of state in the world. She is a divorcee and has two children. Caputova is a member of the liberal Progressive Slovakia party, which has no seats in the parliament.