Bernardino González Ruíz

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Bernardino González Ruíz
President of Panama
In office
March 17, 1963[1] – March 23, 1963[2]
Personal details
Born January 11, 1911
Las Tablas, Los Santos, Panama
Died March 15, 2012 (aged 101)
Panama

Bernardino González Ruíz (January 11, 1911 – March 15, 2012) was a Panamanian politician and physician. He served as the President of Panama for six days from March 17 to March 23, 1963.[1][2] He was also the founder of the Democratic Action Party, a now defunct conservative Panamanian political party.

Gonzalez was born in the city of Las Tablas, Los Santos, Panama, on January 11, 1911.[1][2]

González, who was serving as Minister of State, served as acting President of Panama whilst President Roberto Chiari and Bernadino's brother Sergio, who was First Vice-President, were both out of the country.[3] He was sworn into office on March 17, 1963, at 9:00 a.m.[1] The oath of office was administrated by Julio Mercado in the Yellow Room (Salón Amarillo) of the Palacio de las Garzas.[1] The ceremony was attended by members of the Panamanian cabinet and members of the legislature and the judiciary.[1] González appointed Ricardo E. Chiari as Foreign Minister and Don Nicanor Villalaz as the Minister of Labor, Social Welfare and Public Health.[citation needed][1] His mandate as President lasted just six days and he left office on March 23, 1963.[1][2]

Gonzalez would serve as the Minister Plenipotentiary of Panama to the Court of St. James's in London, United Kingdom.[2] He also served as the President of the National Assembly of Panama for Chiriquí Province and Los Santos Province.[2] Additionally, Gonzalez returned to the federal cabinet, holding the portfolio as Minister of Labor, Health and Welfare.[2] Later in life, Gonzalez became the honorary chairman of the Nationalist Republican Liberal Movement, a center-right political party.[1]

González Ruíz died on March 15, 2012, at the age of 101.[1] He had not suffered from any known illnesses at the time.[1] González Ruíz was the last surviving Panamanian President from the era prior 1968 military coup, which began a military dictatorship lasting from 1968 to 1989.[1][4]

The government of Panama declared three days of national mourning until March 19, 2012.[2] All flags were ordered to fly at half-mast for the three-day period.[2] González funeral was held on March 17, 2012, at the Church of San Lucas at Colegio San Agustín in Costa del Este, Panama.[2][4] His burial was held later in the day from the Iglesia de Santa Librada in Las Tablas, Los Santos.[4]

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