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Peru President from an ethnic society

           In Peru Pedro Castillo, the school teacher and farmer who ran largely on a socialist platform is virtually an unknown candidate until surging unexpectedly to the lead on the first round of the election during  April 2021.

Castillo comes from the mining-heavy Cajamarca province in the northern Andean region of Peru. His first foray into politics was with the so-called Ronda Campesinas in the 1980s essentially, self-organized peasant patrols that provided and still provide self-defense for communities where the Peruvian state doesn’t really have any presence.

The election has also raised questions about the future of Peru’s hard-fought battle against entrenched corruption. Of the country’s nine presidents since 1990, one, Alberto Fujimori — Keiko & his father —(is in jail), another is fighting extradition from California, a third,  shot himself to avoid arrest, and four others are under criminal investigation.

Although Pedro Castillo’s Marxist-Leninist Free Peru party is the largest in Peru’s incoming Congress, with 37 seats in the 130-member single-chamber body, he will face a conservative majority led by the 24 members of Fujimori’s Popular Force,  

the second-largest party. 

Castillo’s economic proposals have caused alarm and uncertainty among Peru’s economic elites, who fear his presidency will be the end of the free market economic model that has been in place in Peru since the 1990s. Pedro Castillo, the provincial schoolteacher who promised to restructure Peru’s economy to favor the poor, was confirmed.

He interacted “Welcome everyone. Bring your experience, but with your loyalty and transparency. We’re not going to rob a single cent from the Peruvian people.


Samuel Rotta, head of the Peruvian branch of the anti-corruption group ‘Transparency International’, warned that. ‘The whole world eats well, and we do not.’    Castillo appears unaware of basic aspects of Peru’s existing anti-corruption efforts. One potentially positive sign, is Castillo’s campaign promise to establish an international anti-corruption investigatory committee similar to committees that have helped indict powerful politicians in Guatemala and Honduras.

Castillo also will have to deal with the corona virus. Peru has the world’s highest covid-19 death rate, and public health experts are warning of an imminent third wave. So far, Peru has administered 10 million vaccine doses, with just 12 percent of the country’s 32 million people fully vaccinated.

On the campaign trail, Castillo promised to end lockdowns and provide free vaccinations for the 

entire population.

Castillo represents a sector of society completely marginalized from national politics. we might say that the most interesting part of the elections was not the anti-communist hysteria itself, but the fact that Castillo broke through a wall of anti-left propaganda that had previously been so effective.

Peru citizens hope this new President can improve their lives. His election could signal a permanent sea change in Peruvian politics.

When thinking internationally, there may be something like a new Pink Tide with left-wing or center-left governments in Bolivia, Argentina, and Mexico, Colombia, Chile, and Peru.

World society is keen to see the new administration someone of the indigenous social and ethnic background, who the political class feels speaks a different language and operates according to different codes.