Congress voted against Rocío Silva-Santisteban’s list and Peru still has no president

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By 42 votes in favor, 52 against and 25 abstentions, the only list of candidates for the Board of Directors was rejected and a fourth intermission was passed.

The Congress of Peru refused to elect Rocio Silva-Santisteban, of the Broad Front, as the new head of the Board of Directors, and therefore as the new president of the country, after the resignation of Manuel Merino.

60 votes in favor were needed, but surprisingly there was no consensus among the congressmen: there were 42 positive votes, 52 negative votes and 25 abstentions.

Silva-Santisteban was emerging as Merino’s successor, since a single list headed by her had been presented and completed by Francisco Sagasti (Purple Party) in the first vice-presidency; Luis Roel Alva (Popular Action) in the second vice-presidency, and Yessica Apaza Quispe (UPP) in the third vice-presidency.

After the vote, the session was suspended and a Board of Spokespersons was convened to return to negotiate and appoint the new authorities.

“It is a surprise, because it took a lot of work to come up with a consensus list,” Silva-Santisteban told RPP.

“This makes us think how much distance there is between the spokespersons and their parliamentary groups. We have been from 8 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. when we had to deliver the list and there were advances and setbacks. Finally the plenary session has expressed its will and now there is an intermission and we are going to see what other approaches are going to be given, “he added.

After acknowledging that “there were several parliamentary groups that disagreed” with the list, the left-wing congresswoman said that “today a solution must come out of Congress.” “The public is waiting for us to act quickly and in defense of democracy”, said.

While the congressmen define the next steps, hundreds of citizens protested outside the Congress and demanded a way out of this conflict.

This Sunday, Congress accepted the resignation of President Manuel Merino, who had been in office for six days but was forced to submit his resignation due to the massive protests against him, in which two young people were killed and there were dozens of injured and more than 40 missing.

The chosen one will be the third president in less than a week, in a nation badly hit by the coronavirus pandemic and the economic recession, which plunged into a political crisis when parliament removed popular president Martín Vizcarra in a whirlwind trial last Monday.

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