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pedro castillo - peru

Pedro Castillo, the Communist Candidate for President, Leads Polls in Peru

Early polls show Pedro Castillo, the communist candidate for president in Peru, is currently taking lead in the elections. Run-off elections are likely.

[Leer en español]

On April 11, citizens of Peru held its presidential elections. Early exit poll numbers show that pollsters were wrong in their forecast that the far-left candidate would not win the elections; however, these polls now show that Peru is on the verge of falling in the hands of communism, as Pedro Castillo leads the results so far.

So far, the official results of the National Office of Electoral Processes (ONPE) reveal that with 66.17% of the processed precincts, with 16.76% of valid votes, the communist Pedro Castillo is the first candidate to pass to the second electoral round. Meanwhile, the rival is still to be defined between the right-wing candidates Hernando De Soto and Keiko Fujimori.

Hours before the elections were held, the main pollsters such as Ipsos did not even mention Castillo among the frontrunners. In fact, the last mock poll left the communist candidate in seventh place.

Keiko Fujimori - Pedro Castillo - El American
Keiko Fujimori is the most “anti-voted” candidate in Peru (EFE)

The scenarios for a ballotage in Peru

Although it is practically a fact that Pedro Castillo will go to the second round, it remains to be seen who his opponent will be. Although Keiko Fujimori and Hernando De Soto are right-wing candidates, the “antivote” against Fujimori is such that if she passes to the second round, she may give the Presidency to the left.

What is happening in Peru is that Keiko Fujimori, daughter of former president Alberto Fujimori, is under investigation for alleged money laundering; and there are also accusations against her for leading a “political war” against the last three presidents since her party Fuerza Popular (Popular Force) became a “thorn in the flesh” for the governance of the Executive power from the Congress.

According to the Institute of Peruvian Studies (IEP), Keiko Fujimori is the candidate with the highest number of people saying they would never vote for her in the elections so that if she goes to the second round, there is a high probability that she will not be able to unite and add up all the votes of the right-wing won by her opponents. If so, the communist Pedro Catillo has great chances of winning the Presidency.

However, if Hernando De Soto makes it to the second round, everything indicates that he would be the next president of Peru, since his government plan could add up the votes of the Peruvian right and thus surpass Castillo.

Who is Pedro Castillo?

Castillo is a presidential candidate for the Peru Libre party, has been a teacher for some years, and was one of the leaders of the 2017 teachers’ union strike. In fact, he has linked to MOVADEF the political branch of Sendero Luminoso, a subversive and terrorist organization in Peru.

According to political analyst Jaime de Althaus, “Peru Libre’s government plan is by far the most radical, it is pure Castroism.”

“We currently live in an apparently renewed capitalist system, in economic neoliberalism, called Social Market Economy, imposed since 1993 and since then it has gone against the interests of the great majorities of the country. To change this sad reality, it is necessary to propose adjustments in the economic field, most of them in a drastic way”, assures Perú Libre’s government plan called “Popular economy with markets.”

Castillo’s proposals are reminiscent of the actions implemented by Hugo Chavez in Venezuela and which caused the economic and humanitarian crisis in that country.

The Peruvian candidate proposes a new Constitution to move towards a “nationalizing state” that reserves the management of strategic resources. He also announces a massive nationalization of the Peruvian economy and of the main services such as air corridors, airports, railroads, ports, highways, pension services, among others.

The communist candidate claims to be an enemy of the United States and of “imperialism”, while his plan warns that he does not advocate freedom of the press but “a press committed to the education and cohesion of its people.”

The threat to Peru’s stability is such that the vice-presidential candidate of Peru Libre, Dina Boluarte, assured this Sunday that her group will not subscribe to “any road map to change” its proposals. Pedro Castillo’s party insists on “closing the Constitutional Court (TC) and convening a Constituent Assembly to elaborate a new Constitution.”

“We are going to change the economic structure of the country, in the sense that the state regulates the market,” stated Boluarte.

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