The general elections of Peru in 2021 were held this Sunday, April 11, as they had been initially scheduled. About 25 million Peruvians went to the polls to exercise their right to vote and democratically elected the candidate of their choice. In addition to the presidential elections, the population elected their next representatives in Parliament, who in the next five years will carry out legislative and oversight work, including 130 congressmen and five Andean parliamentarians for the 2021-2026 government period.
The elections took place amid the state of health emergency due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Ipsos reported the results of its quick count at 69.1%.
Who is Pedro Castillo, leading Presidential Candidate in Perú?
Professor José Pedro Castillo Terrones, 51, was born in the district of Tacabamba, in the Chota province located in Cajamarca, the jurisdiction where he went to vote on April 11.
Terrones registered in the Perú Libre party led by Vladimir Cerrón on September 30, 2020, the last day on which the registration of citizens who wanted to participate in the 2021 elections.
Before this affiliation, he was part of the Perú Posible party since 2002, when he tried to run for the Anguía district in Cajamarca. Castillo Terrones ceased to be part of this political party in 2017, when the political group lost its registration.
He trained as a primary school teacher, and then earned a Bachelor of Education in 2006 at the César Vallejo University. Pedro Castillo as he is popularly known, has a master’s degree in educational psychology which he obtained from this same university in 2013.
The presidential candidate of Peru Libre appeared in the news as the protagonist of the protests that lasted two months in 2017 that paralyzed a large part of the education sector against the management of the then Minister Marilú Martens.
Pedro Castillo’s Governing Proposal
The government plan of Pedro Castillo and his party, Perú Libre is 77 pages-long. In its first pages, it calls for a new Constitution to replace the one created in 1993, during the first government of Alberto Fujimori.
The party recognizes Peru as a pluri-national State and affirms that homogenous solutions to its various needs won’t work.
“Those of us who have traveled the country can affirm the existence of abrupt differences between the various regions. The North, Center, South and East, each with its own problems and potentialities, they have a differentiated origin, diagnosis and treatment, according to reasons cultural and material, which are also the reasons why a leftist current was born in the country, first provincially, then regionally, and later it become a party of national scope, Perú Libre. The birth of the Party was not only a response to the right, but also a response to Peru’s traditional left,” the proposal reads.
PERÚ LIBRE Ideology and Program
The party establishes a strategy to re-empower a state “that has been lost to transnational forces,” and “is almost imperceptible and sickly” in contrast with the pummeling advance of “the dictatorship of the market,” the plan contends.
“Neoliberalism broke our burgeoning nation along with our public and private industries. Gains became privatized and losses became socialized. An exclusive monopoly was handed over to transnational companies along with laboring flexibilities that enabled the legal exploitation of the Peruvian worker, incrementing the depth of inequality in our country. Our people have become mere tools of production and simple merchandise. These moves have taken us back to neocolonialism. We are proposing a remedy captured in our slogan: No more poverty in a rich Country!
PERÚ LIBRE states its principles are democratic, decentralist, internationalist, inclusive, sovereign, humanist and anti-imperialist. The party believes in five principles: unity, commitment, identity, decision and action.
“International paradigms, ought not be antagonistic to the praxis and aspirations of Peru’s native peoples,” underscores the party.
The official results of the National Office of Electoral Processes (ONPE) continue to be updated with the passing of the hours after the general elections that were held this Sunday, April 11. At 50.994% of the records processed, Peru Libre’s candidate, Pedro Castillo, maintains 16.201% of valid votes in his favor.
To learn more about the party’s guidelines, including its stance on media, women’s rights, education, environmental protections and tourism, among other important stances, read PERÚ LIBRE party’s proposal here.
Soledad Quartucci | Latina Republic
Dr. Soledad Quartucci is the founder and CEO of Latina Republic, a 501(C)3 California-based nonprofit organization. Latina Republic is a reporting, research, advocacy and charitable organization advancing human rights in the Americas. We fill the void in coverage of urgent social, political, human rights, economic and gender inequalities affecting the Americas. Through our allies in Latin America, we highlight contributions, heritage, history, leadership and innovation. Latina Republic reports on stories that integrate local strategies to the betterment of the region. We make space for and empower unheard voices and celebrate the rich histories of Latin America.