Nicaragua: Alianza por la República (APRE), including ideology, party logo, structure and leadership; membership in coalitions; whether the party issues membership cards; treatment of party members (2004-September 2019) [NIC106354.E]

Research Directorate, Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada

1. Overview and Ideology

According to Europa Regional Surveys of the World for 2006, President Enrique Bolaños created the APRE in May 2004 (Europa Regional Surveys of the World 2006, 659). Sources state that the APRE was created as an alternative to the Constitutional Liberal Party (Partido Liberal Constitucionalista, PLC) and the Sandinista National Liberation Front (Frente Sandinista de Liberación Nacional, FSLN) and in alliance with the Conservative Party of Nicaragua (Partido Conservador de Nicaragua, PCN) (Europa Regional Surveys of the World 2006, 659; Political Parties of the World, 444). According to sources, the APRE is a union of the following political parties: the PCN, Great Liberal Union (Gran Unión Liberal, GUL), Liberal Party 1913 (Partido Liberal 1913), Nicaraguan Democratic Movement (Movimiento Democrático Nicaragüense, MDN), the Social Christians and National Unity (Social Cristianos y Unidad Nacional, PSCN) (La Prensa 26 May 2004; PHW 2006, 846) and the National Unity Movement (Movimiento Unidad Nacional, MUN) (PHW 2006, 846).

According to La Prensa, a Nicaragua based news source, the President of APRE in 2004 was Miguel López Baldizón, and President Bolaños was an "honorary witness" in the creation of the alliance (La Prensa 26 May 2004). A news release published on the website of the National Assembly in 2005 similarly states that Miguel López Baldizón is the President of the APRE (Nicaragua 22 Mar. 2005).

La Prensa quotes López Baldizón as stating that [translated] "[o]ne of the priorities of [APRE] is to improve the political culture, so as not to continue in the hands of bipartisanship, and to give the population the opportunity of new alternatives, where they do not have to choose between [the] corrupted or [traditional political] leaders," and that the party will [translation] "contribute to strengthening democracy" (La Prensa 26 May 2004). La Prensa quotes the president of the Conservative Party Mario Rappacciolo as saying that APRE's objectives include providing better opportunities to "the most disadvantaged sectors" (La Prensa 26 May 2004). Corroborating information could not be found among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate within the time constraints of this Response.

2. Past Elections and Activities
2.1 2004 - 2006

According to sources, in the local elections of 7 November 2004, the APRE won six local councils (Europa Regional Surveys of the World 2006, 659) or five mayoralties and one capital (PHW 2012).

According to Agence France-Presse (AFP), the APRE united with the Nicaragua Liberal Alliance (Alianza Liberal Nicaragüense, ALN), supporting Eduardo Montealegre of the ALN as candidate for President in the November 2006 election (AFP 12 May 2006). The leader of the APRE at the time was Miguel López (AFP 12 May 2006). AFP reports that discussions leading up to the support of the APRE to ALN took place [translation] "amid strong political discrepancies" between party deputy Miguel López and the APRE's presidential candidate José Alvarado (AFP 12 May 2006). The same source reports that José Alvarado resigned his presidential nomination with the APRE due to "lack of internal consensus" within the APRE and accepted the candidacy as vice president for the PLC (AFP 12 May 2006).

2.2 2011 - 2012

According to The International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES), in the election of 6 November 2011 for the National Assembly, the APRE obtained 0.37 percent of the votes (9,317 out of 2,512,584) and no seats with Róger Guevara as the leader (IFES n.d.a). An election campaign website for Róger Guevara for the 2011 presidential election lists among his priorities, the resumption of diplomatic ties with countries [translation] "that have withdrawn due to the mismanagement of the international policy of President Daniel Ortega", increase support for education, and end the monopoly of communication companies (Alianza APRE 12 Sept. 2011). According to La Prensa, the APRE won 0.23 percent of the vote (less than 6,000 votes) in the presidential elections of 2011 (La Prensa 28 May 2016). A report on political parties in Nicaragua by Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (KAS), a think-tank and consulting agency that undertakes research on policy, democracy and justice issues (KAS n.d.), states that the APRE won 0.5 percent of the vote in 2011 (KAS 29 Oct. 2018, 4).

La Prensa, indicates that in the 2012 municipal elections APRE had representation in 98 percent of municipalities with 6,223 candidates (La Prensa 28 May 2016).

2.3 2016 - 2019

According to sources, Carlos Canales [the President of the APRE (La Prensa 28 May 2016)] ran in the 2016 presidential elections as a member of APRE (La Prensa 21 Aug. 2016; Agencia EFE 7 Nov. 2016; BBC 3 Nov 2016), and Nilo Salazar ran as his vice president (INDE 7 Oct. 2016). According to IFES, Carlos Canales won 1.4 percent of the vote (35,002 out of 2,488,199 valid votes) in the 2016 presidential election (IFES n.d.b). The BBC reports that Carols Canales campaigned [translation] "against corruption and the rescue of ethical, civic and moral values that … have been lost in Nicaragua" (BBC 3 Nov. 2016).

In the National Assembly election of 6 November 2016, the APRE won 2.04 percent of the vote (49,329 out of 2,441,955 valid votes) (IFES n.d.c). According to the website for the National Assembly, the APRE currently holds one seat in the National Assembly with Byron Rodolfo Jeréz Solis from the district of Managua, and with Gabriela Edisa Del Carmen Zepeda serving as his deputy (Nicaragua n.d.). According to the BBC, Jeréz is a former official of the Arnoldo Alemán government [1997-2002] (BBC 3 Nov. 2016). According to the Europa Regional Surveys of the World, Jeréz, an associate of Alemán, was accused of embezzling state funds and laundering them in US banks, and found guilty in June 2003 of defrauding the government for over US$400,000 (Europa Regional Surveys of the World 2006, 659). The same source states that in December 2003, Jeréz was declared innocent of "many of the charges" and released from prison on bail (Europa Regional Surveys of the World 2006, 659). According to La Prensa, Jeréz votes with the FSLN and "defends the actions of … Ortega" (La Prensa 8 Aug. 2019). The KAS report describes the APRE as a "satellite party" of the FSLN (KAS 29 Oct. 2018, 4). Corroborating information could not be found among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate within the time constraints of this Response.

La Prensa reports that the president of the Municipal Electoral Council (Consejo Electoral Municipal, CEM) of La Concordia indicated that the registered mayoral candidate for the APRE was a member of the FSLN who reportedly was not aware that his name was on the list of candidates for that municipality (La Prensa 31 Oct. 2017). According to the same source, Carlos Canales would not explain why the member of the FSLN appeared as a candidate without his consent (La Prensa 31 Oct. 2017). Further and corroborating information could not be found among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate within the time constraints of this Response.

3. Party Logo, Structure, Membership's Cards, and Treatment of Party Members

According to La Prensa, the APRE flag is red, green and blue (La Prensa 26 May 2004). Corroborating information could not be found among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate within the time constraints of this Response.

Information on a party logo, structure, membership cards, and treatment of party members could not be found among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate within the time constraints of this Response.

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim for refugee protection. Please find below the list of sources consulted in researching this Information Request.

References

Agence France-Presse (AFP). 12 May 2006. "Partido de gobierno se une a alianza derechista de Montealegre." (Factiva)

Agencia EFE. 7 November 2016. "Nicaragua Opposition Reports 'Massive' Voter Abstention in National Election." (Factiva)

Alianza APRE. 12 September 2011. "Roger Guevara Mena reanudaría relaciones con China Continental." [Accessed 3 Sept. 2019]

British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC). 3 November 2016. Arturo Wallace. "Quiénes son los rivales de Daniel Ortega a la presidencia de Nicaragua (y por qué probablemente nunca has escuchado de ellos)." [Accessed 9 Aug. 2019]

Europa Regional Surveys of the World. 2006. "Nicaragua." London: Routledge.

Instituto Nicaragüense de Desarrollo (INDE). 7 October 2016. "Partido Alianza por la República comparte propuesta de agenda de nación con INDE." [Accessed 9 Aug. 2019]

International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES). N.d.a. "Republic of Nicaragua: Election for Asamblea Nacional (Nicaragua National Assembly), Nov. 6, 2011." [Accessed 9 Aug. 2019]

International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES). N.d.b. "Republic of Nicaragua: Election For President, Nov. 6, 2016." [Accessed 9 Aug. 2019]

International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES). N.d.c. "Republic of Nicaragua: Election for Asamblea Nacional (Nicaragua National Assembly), Nov. 6, 2016." [Accessed 9 Aug. 2019]

Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (KAS). 29 October 2018. José Antonio Peraza Collado. "Los partidos políticos de Nicaragua." [Accessed 29 Aug. 2019]

Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (KAS). N.d. "About Us." [Accessed 4 Sept. 2019]

La Prensa. 8 August 2019. Leonor Álvarez. "Estos son los partidos políticos que se declaran opositores a la dictadura en Nicaragua." [Accessed 5 Sept. 2019]

La Prensa. 31 October 2017. Leonor Álvarez. "Partidos APRE y PRD no tienen sede en Jinotega, pero presentaron candidatos." [Accessed 29 Aug. 2019]

La Prensa. 21 August 2016. Vladimir Vásquez. "Carlos Canales: 'Nos recomendaron llevar a Byron Jerez'." [Accessed 29 Aug. 2019]

La Prensa. 28 May 2016. Leonor Álvarez. "Por Apre no votan ni sus candidatos." [Accessed 29 Aug. 2019]

La Prensa. 26 May 2004. María José Uriarte R. "Nace Alianza por la República." [Accessed 29 Aug. 2019]

Nicaragua. 22 March 2005. Asamblea Nacional. "Presidente de AN y jefes de bancadas se reunen con la Mesa Global de Donantes." [Accessed 5 Sept. 2019]

Nicaragua. N.d. Asamblea Nacional. "Diputado Byron Rodolfo Jeréz Solis." [Accessed 9 Aug. 2019]

Political Handbook of the World 2012 (PHW). 2012. "Nicaragua." Edited by Tom Lansford. Washington, DC: CQ Press.

Political Handbook of the World 2005-2006 (PHW). 2006. "Nicaragua." Edited by Arthur S. Banks et al. Washington, DC: CQ Press.

Political Parties of the World. 2005. "Nicaragua." London: John Harper Publishing.

Additional Sources Consulted

Oral sources: Alianza por la República; former candidate of Alianza por la República.

Internet sites, including: Americas Society and Council of the Americas; Amnesty International; The Carter Center; ecoi.net, The Economist; Europa World; European University Institute; Federation of American Scientists; Freedom House; The Guardian; Human Rights Watch; International Centre for Not-for-Profit Law; International Crisis Group; Inter-Parliamentary Union; Jane's Country Risk Daily Report; Jane's Intelligence Review; Organization of American States – Inter-American Commission on Human Rights; Política y gobierno; UN – Refworld; US – Congressional Research Service, Department of State; Wilson Centre.