Peru did not choose populism

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Despite of such a tight result, I am pleased that Pedro Pablo Kuczynski has won the elections in Peru.

The conservative Kuczynski was the favourite internationally, also to the international financial markets and he represents the value of the experience, as he has been dedicated to Public service since his youth. He has been Minister of Finance, Prime Minister and Advisor to various cabinets during more than 50 years he is in politics.

He had Keiko Sofia Fujimori as opponent whose main dream was to clear the name of her father: the former president Alberto Fujimori, sentenced to 25 years in prison for corruption and crimes against humanity. Keiko had prepared thoroughly during the last five years to return to the Palace of Pizarro, home of the Peruvian government. Fujimori’s daughter represented all of the nostalgic of an authoritarian regime were looking for all of it Keiko was proposing in her program: heavy-handed: death penalty for paedophiles, Alcohol Prohibition, Army Forces in the streets to fight against crime and, construction of prisons over the four thousand meters high, so the prisoners could use their cell phones.

But Keiko is also the daughter of the man who ended the terrorist guerrilla Sendero Luminoso; the man who modernized the country and who managed to follow the path of growth in Peru. The dark side of his father’s regime is the shadow that is haunting Keiko:  the business with the drug’ traffickers, the people disappearances, the forced sterilization, the torture in the Central Intelligence’ basement, and the suitcases full of money from corruption and even the weapon’ trafficking with the FARC. The Harvard professor and Peru’s expert Steven Leviysky commented, “Keiko can be democratic. I do not know but have you seen who is going with her?”, many of the former employees to Alberto Fujimori’ Administration who were hiding during Keiko’s campaign to avoid damaging it. Peru did not need a Fujimori dynasty.

Kuczynski has become President of Peru by a minimal difference. With only 17% of the votes in the first round, Kuczynski knows that he owes his victory to the ‘antifujimorismo’. Although Keiko Fujimori lost the Presidential Chair, she is the absolute queen at the Congress. The new president will have to show off his ability to dialogue with his opposition. I believe that the new president could do very well his job, and certainly he has the experience. To the outside world it is a relief to see how the Peruvians, even for a minimal difference in the result, have not elected to populism.


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