Karencita de Perú

The Parties and The Candidates

Posted on: April 8, 2011

At 12:01am on Friday April 8th, the Ley Seca begins here in Peru.   This is the Dry Law that says that no alcohol can be sold prior to Sunday’s Presidential election.  Ironically, one of Peru’s leading grocery chains had a big sale on alcohol today and the place was packed.

I have to say that one of the things that has struck me most about the Peruvian election campaign is that it is very colorful, both figuratively and literally.  Each party has colors to represent it that are very bright and definitely call attention.  In addition, the ballots marked by the voters for President and Vice President  not only contain each candidate’s photo but also the symbol that represents the party.  Voters will also be electing members of congress.  Each person running for congress is represented by a number.  Voters can just mark an ‘X’ on the symbol of the party they want to elect the congressman or woman from or they can write the numbers of two specific individuals who are running for congress, as long as they are from the same party.

So, when they make their important civic decision on Sunday, what options do Peruvians have to choose from?  Five hopeful candidates are running for the post of President. Let’s take a brief look at each candidate, their parties, their symbols and their colors.

Alejandro Toledo – Alianza Perú Posible

Party colors:  yellow & green

Slogan: “What I did well I will do better”

Toledo served as President of Peru from 2001 – 2006.  He has a Ph.D in Economics of Human Resources. He is most well-known for his opposition again former President Alberto Fujimori. Toledo portrays himself as a center-leftist, promising voters not only economic development but also social development.

Keiko Fujimori – Fuerza 2011

Party Colors:  Orange & White

Slogan: Keiko Presidente

As the name suggests, Keiko Fujimori is the daughter of imprisoned Peruvian ex-President Alberto Fujimori.  She is the only female candidate and the youngest at age 35.  She has an MBA and is a Congresswoman in the current government.   She is a spokeswoman for the poor and underprivileged and is mostly supported by the rural population.  Here campaign has been surrounded by the controversy that, if elected, many think she will pardon her father. 

Luis Castañeda Lossio – Solidaridad Nacional

Party Colors:  Yellow

Slogan:  Para que todos vivamos mejor (So that we all live better)

Castañedo, often referred to as Lucho, is the former mayor of the City of Lima.  His term ended in late 2010.  As mayor he completed many works projects the most visible being the Metropolitano bus system.  His support is concentrated mainly in Lima and has waned off in the last weeks of the campaign.

Ollanta Humala – Gana Perú

Party Colors:  Red & White

Slogan:  Honestidad para hacer la diferencia (Honesty to make the difference)

Ollanta is one of the most controversial of the candidates due to his ties to Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez.   Ollanta served in the Peruvian army and achieved the rank Lieutenant Colonel.  He is leftist leaning but has moved his policies closer to the center to gain more support from voters.  Ollanta was ahead in the final poll published prior to the election, but according to the poll, would lose against all candidates in the likely event of a run-off.

Pedro Pablo Kuczynski – Alianza por el Gran Cambio

Colors: multiple

Slogan: “PPKuy sabe cómo hacerlo” (PPKuy knows how to do it)

Kuczynski, most commonly referred to as PPK, served as Minister of Energy and Mining, of the Economy and President of the Council of Ministers in Toledos government.  He is an economist and has a sound reputation for conventional economics.   During the campaign, PPK became known for his mascot, PPKuy, a human-sized guinea pig character that has been the success of his campaign and has turned into a promotional sensation.  PPK has been the only candidate to honestly say that there are limits to what the government can spend to solve some of the countries problems such as poverty and underpaid teachers and police.


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