Zacharias Tomias Castovia
|31st President of Zamastan|
January 1st, 2016 – January 23rd, 2019
|Preceded by||Cassious Castovia|
|Succeeded by||Anya Bishop|
|President and CEO |
August 16th, 2012 – December 29th, 2015
|Succeeded by||Tauren Delavian|
|Chairman and Senior Advisor |
|Assumed office |
January 23rd, 2019
|Born||September 22, 1990 (Age:29)|
Tofino, Zian, Zamastan
|Height||6 ft (183 cm)|
|Parents||Cassious Castovia, Mara Camden Castovia|
|Relatives||William Castovia (Great-Great-Grandfather), Percy Castovia (Great-Grandfather), Scott Castovia (Grandfather)|
|Residence||Tofino, Zian, Zamastan|
|Net worth||Z$ 52,800,000,000|
Zacharias Tomias Castovia is a Zamastanian politician and businessman, ex officio Prince of Lutharia, who also served as the 31st President of Zamastan, assuming power after the unexpected death of his father, Cassious Castovia in 2016 until his resignation on January 23rd, 2019. Before becoming President, Zacharias Castovia was the founder and CEO of ZSuites Incorporated, a multi-billion dollar real-estate company. As President, he was seen as a divisive figure on the world stage, being considered one of the prominent leaders in the Coalition of Crown Albatross. His presidency was defined by a unprecedented rise of economic prowess, numerous polarizing military conflicts such as the Gladysynthia Crisis, and legislative actions that have had unique impact on everyday life in Zamastan. He was also the youngest President elected in Zamastanian history, as well as one of the youngest heads of state on Iearth.
Castovia resigned the Presidency on January 23rd, 2019, and was succeeded by Anya Bishop in a special election. During Bishop's administration, Castovia was largely absent from public life, although his comments on the administration were largely negative due to his disagreements with its handling of the economy and their response to the "PoverTea" Protests. Upon Bishop's removal from office and Foley Sakzi's administration taking over, Castovia was lauded as a statesman and often undertook diplomatic missions on behalf of President Sakzi. Castovia is ranked among the riches people in the world with a net worth of Z$52.8 billion.
- 1 Early Life
- 2 Business Career
- 3 Death of Cassious Castovia
- 4 Presidency (2016-19)
- 4.1 Domestic Policy
- 4.2 Foreign Policy
- 4.3 Delavian Bribery Scandal
- 5 Post-Presidency
- 6 Personal Life
Born on September 22, 1990, in Tofino to President Cassious Castovia and Mara Camden Castovia, Zacharias Castovia was poised from birth to be a leader. Interestingly enough, he was born on the morning of Cassious Castovia's 5th term election (September 22nd on even-numbered years is Election Day in Zamastan). He was named for his mother's maternal grandfather, Colonel Zacharias LaMaine Camden, after whom LaMaine, Zian, is named. Young Zacharias, though growing up preferred to be called Zachary. He was educated in the public school districts of Tofino, and in addition, separately by private tutors – his cousin Katie Camacho and his father's law clerk, Tauren Wells. He soon began to exhibit his literary skills. Until the age of ten, Zachary grew up in the Zian Presidential Mansion in Tofino, largely in the care of his mother. Though frequently absent due to his participation in world affairs and the Presidency, Cassious maintained a correspondence with his son, encouraging him to read works by authors like Thucydides and Hugo Grotius. With his father's encouragement, Castovia would also translate classical authors like Virgil, Horace, Plutarch, and Aristotle. Zachary also picked up interests in geography and film, and throughout his teenage years would join his father on trips abroad and create personal short films which he would show to friends in the Presidential Mansion's private theater.
Over time, as the strain of the Presidency and the involvement of Zamastan in conflicts in Vulkaria, as well as several corruption scandals that took Cassious away from personal life, the relationship between father and son waned. Zacharias’ 18th birthday and his father’s 12th election victory in 2008 was spent on a global trip with only a few of his close friends. Thanks to the wealth of the Castovia family, the soon-to-be long trip was lavish. He didn’t return to Zamastan for the next many years aside from mandatory requirements for his education at the University of Tofino, and only made rare conversation with his father and mother.
Though consistently traveling, Castovia attended classes both on-campus and online for the famed Tofino University, where he majored in business and minored in Graphic Design and Interior Design, achieving a Masters in all three academics.
2009 Mönusÿnthys Shooting
In 2009, Zacharias was present at a mass-shooting in Gladysynthia while visiting a bar with his friends. Police managed to kill the attacker, but not before six people had been killed, including one of Castovia's friends Lonnie Wedell. During the attack, Castovia was able to lead several people out of the back of the bar and to the safety of the next door building.
In 2012, Zacharias Castovia was able to obtain a high-profile position on the administration board of a real-estate company in Tofino called 'Foresster Market', which dealt with high-end apartment retail. By August 16th, 2012, Zacharias Castovia had gained enough profile within the company that he was entrusted as CEO. In 2013, Castovia overhauled the company, appointed new people to head sub-committees, and began purchasing and merging other companies. It was renamed ZSuites Incorporated, and eventually had sole proprietorship over an additional 703 business entities. By 2014, through its various constituent companies and partnerships, ZSI had interests in real estate development, investing, brokerage, sales and marketing, and property management. It owned, operated, invested in, and developed residential real estate, hotels, resorts, residential towers, and golf courses in various countries. It also operate or have operated in construction, hospitality, casinos, entertainment, book and magazine publishing, broadcast media, model management, retail, financial services, food and beverages, business education, online travel, commercial and private aviation. The enterprise also has a subsidiary dedicated to arms and weapons development.
Castovia had to release himself from the administrative board of ZSuites Incorporated during his presidency. Once he retired from the presidency in January 2019, he reassumed his position on the board.
Death of Cassious Castovia
President Cassious Castovia suddenly became ill in 2015. Perhaps the most consequential President up to that moment in history, Cassious Castovia passed away on December 5th, 2015, from diagnosed Brugada syndrome. He was 66 years old. Zacharias Castovia attended his father's funeral on December 15th in Tofino. The funeral saw the likes of family, members of his father’s cabinet, and world leaders. Castovia gave the final speech in the eulogy for his father.
Though he had never discussed publically or with family an intention to run for President, Zacharias was approached by his father’s advisors who wanted him to run in the emergency election. He reluctantly accepted, but began campaigning more aggressively when he realized that he was running against Precilon Waltim, a man who had ties to populist socialism. Castovia, known for his vast enterprise, was a staunch fiscal capitalist and grew concerned about what a Waltim presidency could hold. In the week of elections, Castovia upped his political game of strong talk, financial workings, and promises for a revitalization of the economy. When the emergency election was held, even with low voter turnout, he won with 78% of the vote. Zacharias Castovia assumed the position of the 12th President of Zamastan on January 1st, 2016.
One of Castovia's principle goals was to revitalize the Zamastanian infrastructure, including Transport, Energy, and Education. On February 2nd, 2016, he appointed the secretaries to the new departments of energy, education, and transportation (Madeline Essy, Larry Terrian, and India Maddox respectively) to utilize remnants of the Blanco Initiative to use government expenditures in jobs programs, which led to the increase of reliability for each department. These departments took a more over-watched role across the infrastructure of the nation whereas before, it had been primarily localized. Though fiscally conservative, Castovia assured the Zamastanian people that this move was going to be strictly left to these departments and no others, so that there would be more efficiency and less local corruption that former President Castovia was notorious for not being able to prevent.
Castovia launched the "Get Fit" initiative for youth in Zamastan in 2016 to encourage children to exercize more routinely, do outdoor activities, and eat healthier.
Castovia signed numerous health care packages during his time as President, boosting pay for hospital workers and doctors and giving more funds to health care facilities and institutions across Zamastan.
Castovia has expressed his own views of abortion, personally disagreeing with it in its entirity while also saying he would never stop someone who wants an abortion from getting one. He has often said that his personal views should not be the deciding factor for women, and that they should have the final say over their own bodies. On July 7th, 2018, Castovia signed the Second-Trimester Act, which gave some exemptions (rape, mother's life at risk, and serious health risk to the child) to the ban on third-trimester abortions in most cases in Zamastan. The ban has been in place since President Elene Abotsford's signing in 1975, allowing abortions only until the third-trimester.
In 2017, the Castovia government announced Zamastan would welcome nearly three million immigrants over the next three years.
During the 2015 emergency-election campaign, Castovia said that if made President, he would implement an infrastructure plan worth Z$60 billion in spending over 10 years. Following his win, in 2016, Castovia announced a 12-year, Z$180 billion infrastructure plan, with a focus on public transport, infrastructure in rural communities and Zamastan's underdeveloped southwestern regions, green infrastructure and affordable housing.
Castovia expressed opposition towards the proposed Zian Charter of Values, a controversial charter in that province and elsewhere that among other things prohibited public sector employees from wearing or displaying "conspicuous" religious symbols, justifying that it would make the people of Zian "choose between their freedom of religion and freedom of expression, freedom of conscience and their economic well-being and their acceptance in the workplace."
On June 3rd, 2016, Castovia signed the Religious Freedoms Act of 2016, which guarantees people of any religion to practice their religion in public schools and workplaces, while private institutions had the right to determine their own rules on standards. It also gave tax exemptions to churchs, mosques, synagogues, and other religious sites.
Recreational Drug Use
Castovia first publicly expressed an interest in the legalization of marijuana while speaking at a rally in Verdesia, Verdesia on June 24, 2016. He told a crowd, "I don't think our government should be decriminalizing cannabis, I think we should work towards legalizing it. Tax it and regulate. It's one of the only ways to keep it out of the hands of our kids because the current war on drugs, the current model is not working. We have to use evidence and science to make sure we're moving forward on recreational drug use."
Castovia ran for reelection in 2018 without party affiliation, just as he had never officially had an affiliation as he tended to lean moderately on many aspects. He ran primarily against 3 major opponents with specific challenges to his office: Larious Maxwell, a senator from Pahl's 17th District and a prominent member of the Conservative Party, Janessa Ranniso, a senator from the Northern Island's 2nd District and a member of the Liberal Party, and millionaire Jacob Gregotsman, also non-affiliated with any specific party. Castovia won the election with 43% of the ballot votes on September 22nd, amounting to a majority among all running candidates.
On October 18th, 2017, terrorists attacked several sites around Tofino, killing over 430 people. This was seen by many as the most difficult and president-defining moment that Castovia faced. After the attacks, he led the authorization of airstrikes on Vulkarian-based terror camps, revamped the Zamastanian Intelligence Service, and started receiving counter-terror support from other countries throughout the Coalition of Crown Albatross. Intensive investigations proved that the Vulkarian-based terrorists were sponsored by Malvare, leading to Castovia to declare sweeping sanctions against their regime and resulting in more than 40 additional countries sanctioning Malvare's government as well.
On October 24th, 2018, the Gladysynthian vessel GMS Lockwood fired on the city of Lower Tariel on the Zamastan controlled Northern Isle. Though no one was injured, the attack was enough for Castovia to approve airstrikes on Gladysynthian airbases. The next day, a Zamastanian F-22 Raptor was shot down over Danaska during a sortie, and the pilot Yan Randolph was taken captive. Eventually, the conflict escalated to a much more violent all-out-war. Zamastanian troops invaded the city of Danaska, and held position for nearly a week. However, mounting casualties and unpopularity of the conflict back home led to Castovia's decision to retreat, with the condition that Gladysynthia cease hostilities on the Northern Isle, release pilot Randolph, and remove blockades. The conflict officially ended with a visit by Castovia to Mönusÿnthys to meet with Premiere Seswitch LaFlaunce and the signing of the Treaty of Mönusÿnthys 2018-9B. Nearly 400 Zamastanian troops were killed for a fight that, as critics noted, ended up not producing any results and being relatively worthless militarily. However, the conflict did end up producing trade deals and the easing of tensions between the two nations.
On January 13th, 2019, Pahl's 18th District Congressman Cormac Hammer (Green Liberal Party) opened his session in Congressional Hall by revealing he would pursue charges for investigation and opened articles for ethics violation investigations against Castovia. In his remarks to the congress and senate, he stated that the allegations were for a holiday trip Castovia took on a private island belonging to a billionaire board member from ZSuites Incorporated; the President founded the company and was the former CEO and President of the company. The island was owned by Tauren Delavian, who headed the branch of the company that had operated as a registered lobbyist from 2014-2015. It had received hundred of millions in grants from the federal government in decades prior for its vehicle and weapons manufacturing investments.
Zamastan’s federal conflict-of-interest and ethics office said it was probing whether the visit to the island, which took place over the new year, broke rules preventing elected officials from accepting bribes. The proposed investigations would determine whether the President was bribed in any way, accepted any bribes in any form, or promised legislative or executive action in return for bribes or monetary compensation. President Castovia denied any allegations of bribery, pointing out the hypocrisy of Congressman Hammer following his own ethics probe in 2013 and a conflict of interest because of Hammer's ties to ZSuites, where his division was severed.
However, on January 14th, Speaker Foley Sakzi approved a vote on the Congress floor for clearing the ethics investigation, which passed 268 yay, 231 nay, and 1 abstention. The President, along with his cabinet and staff, were now subject to a subpoena by a special prosecutor. Castovia doubled down on the assertion that no ethical breach had been made and that he had not received any bribes or gifts exceeding Z$5,000. Congressman Hammer and Northern Island's 2nd District senator Janessa Ranniso (whom Castovia had run against in the 2018 election) went forward with approving special prosecutor Cairo Gough to the investigation with a 48 hour cap.
On January 15th, prosecutor Gough announced he had found no signs of ethical breach by President Castovia after a 29 hour investigation. The investigation determined that Castovia had received gifts from Delavian, including a new television for his private residence and two books documenting historical accounts of the Minjian Faith and the World War, but the gifts only amounted to Z$2,092 and were given with no intention of bribery or political compensation. However, the President's Chief of Staff, Emily Miranda, was found guilty or receiving bribes and exchanging promises of vote-telling members of both the liberal and conservative parties. Miranda submitted her resignation later that day. On the 16th, Castovia hired Aya Booth as his replacement for Miranda.
Castovia announced suddenly and unexpectedly his tenure as president would come to an end on Wednesday, January 23rd, 2019. The President was in office for three years and 23 days. In an address to the nation, he stated that following a series of conversations with his senior staff, including his Secretary of Defense, Curtis Fondaden, about the state of the nation, he would resign the presidency. The vague explanation left many stunned, as the President had just survived an ethics commission investigation and was also riding a wave of success following a newly revived green-energy initiative with bi-partisan support. He did not name a preferred successor, leading many to assume that he would simply leave the office up for grabs with an emergency election. The emergency election chose Anya Bishop, a member of the Blue Conservative Party (Zamastan) as the replacement.
Castovia returned to his private life after resigning the Presidency, taking a position at ZSuites Incorporated as a chairman and Senior Advisor to the company. He still maintained significant holdings within the company that were frozen due to his election, so his monetary flow was resumed. He purchased and lives in an estate in Whistler Lake - a wealthy district of Tofino. He gave the rights of Old Castovia Estate (where Cassious, Scott, Percy, and William had all grown up and resided as children) to the Department of National Parks to have it preserved as a historic site.
On May 15th, 2020, Castovia acquired the Château Pélican d'Rouge in Aunistria from media-mogul Gregory de Castellane for Z$572 million. Castovia used a wing of the estate as a home, while converting the remainder into a private club with an initiation fee and annual dues. It serves as his secondary residence apart from his Whistler Lake home.
Politically, Castovia has described himself as "half BCP, half GLP" and "I'm somewhere in the middle, socially liberal and fiscally conservative." In 2014, he stated that he was "not a conservative. I'm registered independent [and] politically moderate." He was elected to the Presidency as an independent. Prompted by the emergence of artificial intelligence, Castovia has voiced support for a universal basic income; he additionally backs direct democracy. He has described himself as a "socialist", but "not the kind that shifts resources from most productive to least productive, pretending to do good, while actually causing harm"—arguing instead, "true socialism seeks greatest good for all." He supports targeting an inclusive tax rate of 30%, prefers consumption taxes to income taxes, and supports the estate tax, as the "probability of progeny being equally excellent at capital allocation is not high."
Castovia has described Zamastan as "[inarguably] the greatest country that has ever existed on Iearth," describing it as "the greatest force for good of any country that's ever been."
Because of the success of his corporte takeover, Zacharias Castovia quickly gained monetary supply. In 2015, it was estimated that he had a net-worth of nearly $50 Billion, which ranks him the top 50 richest people in the world. He owns several homes; two in Zamastan (Tofino and Aunistria), one in Emmiria (Hajaria), one in Cadair (Cardiff), and one in Quetana (Vongane)
Castovia is chairman of the Castovia Blue Foundation, which states its purpose is to provide clean energy systems in disaster areas, sponsor education packages in areas with limited access to education, as well having as other goals towards development of areas lacking development.