Premier Says Meetings with Opponents Have Improved Political Environment

Jimenez, Juan - Sept2013Following three weeks of meetings with leaders of the country’s different political groups, Prime Minister Juan Jimenez believes  that the government’s willingness to listen to opinions and suggestions from its political opponents has improved the country’s political climate, daily Peru.21 reported.

“In one way, we are now feeling in the country how this process of coming together between the political forces has improved the scenario in the country,” he said.

“The tension that we’ve seen in the past few weeks, in the past months, with regards to how politics was being practice in Peru… was a factor that has been much criticized by the population,” he added, citing “bickering, insults, offensive attacks from one side to another.”

Jimenez and other members of President Ollanta Humala’s administration have held meetings with all the key political groups in Peru in recent weeks, including with its former Premier, Salomon Lerner Ghitis. At the meetings, political leaders have discussed issues relating to the economy and other challenges the country faces.

The meetings came following a sharp decline in the approval rating of President Humala, who completed his second year in government at the end of July. Humala’s approval rating has fallen in part due to several political controversies, as well as slowing economic activity.

In mid-August, President Humala said the world economic crisis “has arrived in Peru, which is why we have had a sharp drop in the canon [mining tax], affecting the regions.”  His statement, although followed by a call to join forces for wise investment and policies into the future, was sharply criticized by former President Alan Garcia and Fuerza Popular leader Keiko Fujimori as being “irresponsible” and also by private industry leaders.

Ipsos opinion poll president, Alfredo Torres, said Ollanta had made a mistake because it would affect future decisions by home-makers and businesses.   “If the president tells them a crisis is coming, companies and families reduce their investment because the future looks dark.”

Humala’s call for opposition leaders to meet with his cabinet chief, Juan Jimenez, was initially rejected by the Fujimoristas and by Alan Garcia’s Apra party, who demanded the resignation of Jimenez and Economy minister Luis Castilla before even considering Humala’s invitation.  The willingness of other parties to sit down with the government, however, finally led Apra to go less adamantly to the table. Keiko Fujimori, following President Humala’s refusal to pardon her father, former President Alberto Fujimori, did not attend the meeting but Fuerza Popular was represented by Jaime Yoshiyama.

Following these initial meetings, Premier Jimenez said that President Humala would begin work meetings with his political opponents.

 

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One Comment

  1. Someone would have to been living in a cave some where not to know the United States, Europe and China are in a very difficult financial crisis. Both United States and Europe have dysfunctional, corrupt governments to make matters worse. Peru is a small resource based economy, dependent on other countries to buy their products. Peru can’t just turn on the printing presses to flood the country with money like the United States has been doing for the past few years. Mr Garcia should know how that turned out for Peru, the first time he was president. It seems the other political parties are trying to make it as difficult as possible for President Humala to make a soft landing for the Peruvian economy, as the world economies will go through very trying times the next few years. If they want to be elected president in the next election, then it would be in their best interest to help make a plan to weather the coming financial storm. I think it was very responsible for President Humala to give the Peruvian people a heads up on the financial situation of Peru. The rest of the Peruvian politicians are acting like the dysfunctional American politicians. Time for them to grow up.

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