Peru begins to count votes in the tense presidential runoff election news
In Peru’s presidential runoff, voting statistics have already begun, and export polls show that conservative candidate Keiko Fujimori and her left-wing rival Pedro Castillo have locked in a “statistical tie.”
According to Ipsos’s exit polls on Sunday, the daughter of a disgraceful former president, Fujimori, received 50.3% of the vote, while union leader and teacher Castillo received 49.7% of the vote.
According to Ipsos polls, this is within a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.
The results do not include overseas voters, and election officials said they may be the key to the results.
Ipsos Peru director Alfredo Torres told American TV that the result was very close, “it is impossible to announce the winner at the moment.”
Voting ends at 7pm (00:00 GMT), and the first official result is expected to begin at 11:30pm (04:30 GMT).
On Sunday, millions of people voted for two candidates supporting ideological conflicts. In a close runoff election, voters were deeply divided in class and region.
The polls as of the day of the election showed that the statistics were in a state of dead heat, and Fujimori, who had fallen behind Castillo earlier, was slightly ahead at the end of the campaign.
Tips for election challenges
Both pledged to take very different remedial measures to rescue Peru from the economic downturn caused by the COVID-19 crisis. The Andean country’s coronavirus death rate is the worst in the world, with more than 184,000 deaths among its 33 million population.Official figures show that during the pandemic, another 2 million Peruvians lost their jobs, and nearly one-third of the country’s people are now living in poverty
The 46-year-old Fujimori is the daughter of the imprisoned former President Alberto Fujimori. She promised to follow the free market model and maintain economic stability. Castillo, 51, the son of a farmer, promised to redraft the national constitution to strengthen the role of the state, obtain more profits from mining companies, and nationalize key industries. – Peru is the second largest copper producer in the world.
However, since neither candidate has a clear lead in the polls, signs of election challenges that may be faced by the two camps and the deep distrust of the political class generated by decades of corruption and instability may be in the election. Causes problems later.
Soon after the results of the export polls were announced, Castillo wrote on Twitter: “I ask our people to defend every vote. I call on the Peruvian people from all over the country to take to the streets peacefully and be vigilant in defending democracy.”
Subsequently, Castillo addressed the crowd in the town of Takabamba in the heart of the northern Peruvian Andean countryside through a loudspeaker from the balcony, calling for calmness.
“We must be cautious, the people are wise,” he said. “What we heard is not official news.”
In a brief statement, Fujimori stated that she would retain her judgment until the official results came out and called on “two groups, those who voted for us and those who did not vote for us, to be cautious, calm and peaceful.”
In Lima, Al Jazeera’s Mariana Sanchez said that the exit polls triggered protests from Castillo supporters who gathered near the National Electoral Process Office.
She said that a local TV reporter was beaten at the scene.
“Everyone is on alert. Catsillo and Fujimori’s side are vigilant about what happens during the counting of votes. This is a very stressful game and people are very anxious here.”
Earlier on Sunday, when voting in the Lima area, Fujimori pointed out that some allegations of tampering with votes were found in the capital and the interior of the country.
“We know that something happened today. We hope that the electoral agency will take action on this matter and issue sanctions accordingly,” she said. “I also hope that our party officials remain vigilant.”
She praised “grandma and grandpa” for voting against the background of the second wave of COVID-19 hitting the country and the slow start of vaccination campaigns.
Castillo voted earlier in the day in the rural heartland of the Andes in northern Peru, accompanied by a group of supporters chanting: “Yes, we can!”
He had previously warned of fraud in the election and said that if he sees evidence of wrongdoing, he will be “the first to summon the people.” But he told the crowd on Sunday that he would respect the result and hope that the Peruvians can unite and support the successful candidate.
“If we don’t unite, we cannot push the country forward,” Castillo said.
‘The atmosphere of social conflict’
In Lima, voters ride bicycles, wear roller skates and walk to polling stations to avoid prolonged traffic jams over time.
Among those who voted in Lima was Luis Pizango, who said that for him, “transparency” is the key to the success of the election.
“May Peru win for the benefit of all Peruvians,” he said.
In public opinion surveys, urban and high-income citizens expressed their preference for Fujimori, while the rural poor mostly supported Castillo.
However, no matter who wins, it will be difficult to govern, because the Peruvian Congress is fragmented.
Castillo’s Freedom Peru is the largest single party, second only to Fujimori’s people’s power, but without a majority.
“Given the mistrust that Fujimori’s name and her family’s names generate in many areas, it is not easy (for Fujimori). She must quickly calm the market and find a way to reactivate the market,” political scientist Jessica Smith told AFP, referring to Fujimori’s sentence of 25 years in prison for crimes against humanity and corruption.
Smith said that if Castillo wins, he will have to “consolidate the majority in Parliament, which will enable him to realize his ambitious plan.”
In either case, analyst Luis Passaridico said, “it takes time to calm the situation, because the polarization is serious and the atmosphere of social conflict is strong.”