Post-war and the 20th Century - Democratic transition

With the fall of the dictatorship, an auspicious period of democracy began.  The commander of the coup, Andrés Rodríguez, was elected constitutional president in the first democratic elections, in May of 1989. Also, in 1991, the first direct municipal elections were held, with the unprecedented election of a non-colorado official, Dr. Carlos Filizzola.  And in 1992, the new National Constitution was adopted, which establishes fundamental liberties not recognized in the previous constitution.

Under the protection of the new Magna Carta, public liberties were regained and since then, there have been several general elections.  Other signs of this new period were the removal of party affiliations of the police and military, the renovation of the Supreme Court of Justice, the creation of the General Finance Office of the Republic and the People’s Defense Office

In 1992, the so-called “Terror File” was discovered, a record of all the political arrests and persecutions of the Stroessner regime, which became a valuable testimony that will safeguard the memory of a difficult time shared and experienced by the entire country.

Succeeding the Rodríguez presidency were Juan Carlos Wasmosy in 1993 and Raúl Cubas in 1998.  The presidency of Cubas was cut short by a revolt called “Paraguayan March” in 1999, which resulted in the governing of Luis Angel González Macchi, until 2003.  And in the most recent elections, Dr. Nicanor Duarte Frutos was elected, and whose term will expire in 2008. 

Duarte Frutos, a politician affiliated with the Colorado party throughout his lauded career, was Minister of Education and Culture in the first years before the transition, during whose tenure the Education Reform was implemented.  This has been an important instrument of modernization in Paraguayan education.

Among the achievements of the Duarte Frutos administration we can mention the rising increase of tax collection, as well as improvement in education and healthcare.