Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Interview: Peru’s election shake-up

"Peru's Election Shake-Up"
The Stream - Al Jazeera
March 14, 2016
Originally published: http://stream.aljazeera.com/story/201603111507-0025170

On Monday, March 14 at 19:30 GMT:

Julio Guzman and Cesar Acuna, two of Peru’s main presidential candidates, have been barred from participating in next month’s election after weeks of back and forth between various electoral boards. Guzman’s candidacy has been ruled ‘inadmissible’ because it was not registered in accordance with electoral procedures, while Acuna has been banned because of vote buying.

But it is the ruling on Guzman that is particularly controversial. Guzman, a relatively unknown economist until recently, emerged as the main challenger to frontrunner Keiko Fujimori in past few months. Many feel his removal from the race was political. Guzman himself slammed the decision, calling it “flagrantly illegal and unconstitutional.” But the National Jury of Elections struck down his candidacy on the grounds that he was not selected by his party, Everyone for Peru, through a legitimate internal election. Guzman plans to launch one last “extraordinary” appeal, but few expect it to be successful.

For Peruvians, this is the latest twist in an election where around 70 percent of voters were already dissatisfied with the candidates running. Guzman, on the other hand, appealed to 63 percent of voters who wanted a new figure, having cast himself as an outsider in a race full of familiar faces. Despite leading in the polls, Fujimori is opposed by many others who associate her with her father, a former president found guilty of human rights abuses in 2009. She has also been accused of vote buying. Other remaining candidates face controversies ranging from plagiarism to being on trial for murder.

So what’s next for Peru’s election, and how will the shake-up affect the race?

Joining this conversation:

Alejandro Sanchez @W_Alex_Sanchez
International Security Expert

Francisco Sagasti @FSagasti
Everyone For Peru Party (Todos Por El Peru)

Raul Benavides @DiarioAltavoz
Co-Director, Diario Altavoz

Miklos Lukacs @mlukacs
Professor, Esan Graduate School of Business 

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