Verónica Alcocer García is the wife of Gustavo Petro Urrego, the next president of Colombia 2022 – 2026, who was elected on Sunday, June 19 with more than 50 percent of the votes in the second presidential round.
On August 7, after the inauguration of the new government, she will become the new First Lady of the country. “I want to thank Veronica, who has put up with me for years, that she has achieved her own leadership space,” said Gustavo Petro during her first speech after winning the elections.
Verónica Alcocer was born in Sincelejo, in May 1976. She is the oldest of three children and grew up in a right-wing coastal family. Her grandfather was mayor, so she has been close to politics.
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He was born into a conservative home and grew up with his two brothers: Juan Carlos and María Teresa. His father, Jorge Emilio Alcocer, who passed away, was a renowned lawyer, follower and personal friend of the late Álvaro Gómez Hurtado. His mother, Elizabeth García, lives in Sincelejo.
He met Petro at the beginning of the year 2000, when he went to Sincelejo to give a lecture at the Caribbean University Corporation. She was studying law at that institution.
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“Gustavo came there to give a conference, I was one of the organizers, and we met there. We were on the phone for three months, and I invited him over to meet my family. I thought a lot about how to do this, because my dad, a conservative, and he, a leftist and a former guerrilla. Fortunately, everything went well, they talked for a long time and despite their differences they adored each other. The courtship stage was wonderful, I was terrible at conquering, but he made me fall in love with his intelligence; I am passionate about this about him, he is a brilliant man, ”she told EL TIEMPO.
They were married on December 17, 2000. From that marriage, Sofia and Antonella were born. The two of them joined Petro’s three sons, from his two previous relationships, and Nicolás, Alcocer’s son.
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A person who has a position of this type has to set the direction of what he wants to do and what he has to help
During this year’s presidential campaign, Verónica Alcocer was more of a protagonist than in previous campaigns. He spoke in the media and referred to current issues on the national public agenda.
One of the most notorious controversies was after a recording was known in which the wife of Gustavo Petro made strong statements about some women who work in the media during a meeting. After the issue came to light and was rejected by journalists, he apologized.
(Read: Verónica Alcocer ‘apologizes’ for commenting on women journalists)
He has been working on a project called Progressive Thought Corporation for more than a year. “It was born a year ago. We receive donations and a friend who has a travel agency helps me with the tickets,” she said in an interview with BOCAS Magazine.
Although she has ruled out applying for a popularly elected position, her life and her relationship with Gustavo Petro have led her to be close to politics. “I want to help wherever I am because a position doesn’t tie me down. That’s not an ambition, I’m pretty selfless on that subject,” she said.
In that dialogue with BOCAS, she also referred to the position of first lady: “The role has always been marked a bit by the functions of the State. You have to do this or that, they fit you. I think that a person who has a position of this type has to set the direction of what he wants to do and what he has to help.
And he added: “There is an office and there is a position. There are many things to do, whether or not it is official. The agenda is set by me, but above all it is marked by the needs of the people. From the perspective of an ordinary citizen, I have seen that extremely distant role. I think you have to be in contact with people to listen to them and channel what they clearly need.”
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He also assured that he admires other first ladies such as Michelle Obama, wife of Barack Obama, and Ana Milena Muñoz, wife of César Gaviria.
After her husband’s speech as president-elect, Alcocer wrote on her Twitter account: “My president, I love you.” Earlier, when the results were known, she wrote: “Colombia has hired the best president. An honest, transparent person with ideas of social justice.Let’s hope that all sectors make this transition to a power of life easy!”