By NITYA CHAKRABORTY :
As regards Peru, latest results show that the Left presidential candidate Pedro Castillo secured 50.3 per cent of the votes as against 49.7 per cent of the votes received by Keiko Fujimori of the Rightist combination in a closely contested elections which showed the big divide between the urban and rural areas.
AFTER the setback in Ecuador Presidential elections in April this year, the Leftist coalitions recorded clear victories against the right-wing combinations in Mexico and Peru imparting a big boost to the left forces in the other countries of Latin America who are bracing for elections in 2021 end and 2022. In Mexico, the coalition of Left led by Morena, the party of the Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, popularly known as AMLO won between 265 and 292 of the total of 500 seats in the lower house, thereby getting majority in the law making legislature. But this figure of the ruling combination was less than two third of the house which AMLO was aiming at to get for bringing about constitutional changes for implementing his Fourth Transformation of Mexico. That way, the Mexican President who won the presidential elections in 2018 and still has got three years of his presidency, has to be cautious in proceeding with his reforms for the poor as also with his ambitious plans of nationalising some of the core sector areas dominated by the American multinationals. But taking into account the Right offensive, the propaganda of the corporate media and the biased approach of the country’s election commission, the political observers feel that AMLO has done quite well as the elections were a sort of referendum on his three year of presidency.
As regards Peru, latest results show that the Left presidential candidate Pedro Castillo secured 50.3 per cent of the votes as against 49.7 per cent of the votes received by Keiko Fujimori of the Rightist combination in a closely contested elections which showed the big divide between the urban and rural areas. The socialist Castillo got a big lead in rural areas from the farmers and the other poor while his rival got majority of votes in the urban areas. It was a see-saw battle till the last and even now, Fujimori has not conceded her defeat and like US President Trump, she mentioned of electoral fraud in the latest counting. So some uncertainty is there though the political observers are saying that there was no fraud and Castillo had clearly won. While in Mexico, AMLO was in full control since 2018 as President and he is having a 60 per cent popularity level as the President, the situation in Peru was quite fragile with the divided Left and till the last moment, there was no indication of any concrete programme and action to build an anti-Right alternative.
There were regular demonstrations in the streets against the anti-people policies of the Peru Government, Castillo finally could manage a wobbly coalition but still there are many gaps. If he finally takes over, his job will be tough and he has to get the confidence of all his partners first by working out a common minimum programme for transforming the Peruvian economy in favour of the poor. As of now, the 46 year old Keiko Fujimori is unreconciled to the results. “There’s a clear intention to boycott the will of the people,” Fujimori said at a press conference, in which she showed social media videos to back her claims, and accused supporters of Castillo of stealing votes. She also asked her base to bring forth new allegations, if they exist, on social media. Castillo’s party Free Peru responded to twitter that it rejected all allegations and there were no frauds.
The vote underscored a sharp divide between the capital city Lima and the nation’s rural hinterland that has propelled Castillo’s unexpected rise. Castillo, the son of peasant farmers has pledged to redraft the Peruvian constitution and mining laws leading to apprehensions among the powerful copper producers. Mexico’s election results were on expected lines but the latest Peru results have galvanised the other Left forces fighting the Right wing governments. Presidential elections will be held this year in Chile, Honduras and Nicaragua. In Chile, the Left forces are fighting the present Government and there are discussions for fielding a common Left candidate. In Honduras also, campaign for presidential elections has started. Nicaragua is presently ruled by the left-wing Sandinista President Daniel Ortega who will be seeking his fourth term.
The Opposition is determined to see that he is not re-selected but he is very popular among the workers and the poor, though there are allegations that he is authoritarian. But the most important presidential elections will be in Brazil in 2022. Present far Right president Eric Bolsanoro is most discredited now. Even his party supporters are looking for an alternative candidate. As against this, former President Lula is now out of prison and Supreme Court has cleared him of all charges enabling him to contest the 2022 elections. Lula’s popularity rating is already very high and the Workers Party of Mexico is expected to field him as the Opposition candidate. This possibility has stirred the anti right movement in Latin America. (IPA)