April 12, 2024

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Peru’s Congress agrees to discuss electoral progress through 2023 |  international

Peru’s Congress agrees to discuss electoral progress through 2023 | international

Dina Boulwart, President of Peru, during her televised message on Sunday.Presidency of Peru

Entered Peruvian politics a deja vu. If the solution to the latest crisis, which began with the failed autocoup of Pedro Castillo on December 7, is in the hands of the country’s new president, Dina Boulwart, or Congress, then no short-term solution can be expected. The two forces continue to challenge each other push the general election Or quit, but no one comes forward. Congress on Monday agreed to reopen the debate to hold the election in 2023, an issue that had already been discussed without success on numerous occasions in the past two months, most recently this past Friday.

Protesters continue to pressure the government from the streets, which each time feels less room to maneuver. During the first month and a half, protests continued in the interior, without much change in life in Lima, the capital that is home to a third of the country’s population. But over the past ten days, confrontations due to police repression have moved to the streets of the capital. The crisis has already claimed 58 livesthe last one on Saturday in Lima, due to a shell being fired.

The President delivered a speech on Sunday evening in which a change in tone was noted compared to previous messages. He called on Congress to take “historic responsibility” by approving the electoral advance for 2023 instead of mid-2024 as planned. “Let us say to the whole of Peru, with the highest level of responsibility: We are all leaving.” With these words he presupposes the cry that has already spread throughout the country, in which the citizens demand, “They all leave”: the government and the Congress.

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Congressmen have taken up the president’s gauntlet without any enthusiasm or sign of wanting to change sides. That debate took place last Friday in plenary and was rejected by a large majority. There were only 45 votes in favor and 65 against. The atmosphere does not mean that this will change from one day to the next. There are parties calling for Boluarte’s resignation, deputies in Congress asserting that holding elections in April 2024 is the right thing to do in order to implement the previous political reforms and others, the least of them, in favor of leaving as soon as possible.

Discrediting all state institutions is absolute. The president’s disapproval rating is 76% and his congressional approval rating is barely 7%, according to the latest Institute for Peruvian Studies (IEP) poll. In the same poll, 56% affirmed that the regime’s forces exceeded the suppression of protests, while 26% supported police action. The political crisis continued to intensify after that Years of inability to govern a country that has had six presidents in four years.

However, Boulwart has not shown any sign of planning a resignation at this time. A fact that will also not lead to immediate elections, in which the President of Congress, Jose Williams, will take over the country. Electoral law expert Jose Villalobos explained that a resignation would “create a problem”. It is not clear what kind of election it should be called at that time. It seems that it should be held in 2024.

The president wanted to show on Sunday that her intention to withdraw by making electoral advances is clear. That’s why I’m announcing that if Congress does not pass the October 2023 call this time, the executive branch will introduce two bills to do so. Although these must pass through Congress for approval.

The change of mood of the president, who in her previous messages always accused the demonstrators and defended the actions of the security forces, was also noted in another advertisement of hers. He proposed a comprehensive reform of the 1993 Constitution, which was passed during the government of Alberto Fujimori. This, which would have been unimaginable a few weeks ago, is another of the demands that the street hears the most.

After Congress agreed to discuss the electoral progress again, the session was suspended to begin the round of communications between the parties and to agree on a new text to be presented to the plenary session. This can be held on Monday, if they come to an agreement, or in the next few days. In the event that Congress approves the new date for the elections, the first round will be held in October and the second in December of this year.

And while these debates, which are not new, are taking place in Congress, convulsions continue in the streets. Since noon, about 1,000 people have gone to central Lima and in the interior, the first to wake up last December, and the situation is still chaotic. The government has sent 2,000 police officers to the regions of Ica, south of Lima, and Puno, in the south of the country, in an attempt to regain control of roads that have been closed for several days.

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