This past Sunday, the 7th of October, over 23 million Peruvian citizens went to vote for the Regional and Municipal Elections. Here in Peru, voting is compulsory – meaning you are fined if you do not go to your hometown (or wherever you are registered to vote) and cast your ballot.
In Cusco region, Cusco Province and Cusco city the elected officials and parties include: Jean Paul Benavente from the Accion Popular Party as the governor of Cusco region; Victor Boluarte from the Movimiento Tawantinsuyo (MT Party) as the Mayor of Cusco Province.
What do these results mean for our beneficiaries?
The AP Party in Peru is a centrist and social/liberal party. It represents a reformist alternative to a more conservative branch of Peruvian politics. The party advocates the promotion of an equal society where opportunities are accessible to all. This is an important point, given most of our beneficiaries endure a significant amount of lack of opportunity due to their socio-political backgrounds. Should the Party remain faithful to their policies, this would possibly mean greater job/educational opportunities for our beneficiaries, effectively helping them become more self-sustainable. Additionally, the AP Party ran under the promise of ‘reconquering’ Peru within the context of a globalised world and to promote to Peruvian youth for them to stay in their ‘birth land’ in order to evade the excess of youth exodus. This particular policy could potentially lead to a betterment of educational institutions in Peru as an incentive for students to stay, effectively leading to a stronger education for our beneficiaries.
The MT Party is defined by the word ‘Tawantinsuyo’, which means empire in Quechua. Its main objectives are to ‘save’ Peruvian values, customs and identity in the region. As the leader of the MT party for Cusco Party, Boluarte ran his campaign promising to prioritise the ‘geopolitical vision of the Inka empire’. In addition, they have promised to prioritise education (which they would like to make universally accessible and free), and promote sustainable tourism practices. Both of these present a promising change for our beneficiaries, particularly the goal to make education more affordable as it could mean that the economic support LAFF provides our beneficiaries with could go towards other needs such as doctors visits, books and other educational opportunities. Boluarte seems to be aware of the limited life paths available to marginalised youth in Peru, which the MT party have addressed in their manifesto by emphasising the need to strengthen the presence of ‘vulnerable youth’ in the public sphere by ‘generally strengthening social organisations that represent Peruvian society’ – our partner organisations can be argued to be included in this group. Whether the MT party will give a greater voice and place an emphasis on marginalised youth as promised remains to be seen.
Acción Popular Manifesto: http://www.accionpopular.pe/index.php/identidad-ap/idearios-principios
Movimiento Tawantisuyo Manifesto: https://declara.jne.gob.pe/ASSETS/PLANGOBIERNO/FILEPLANGOBIERNO/8275.pdf
Regional Election Results:https://resultados.onpe.gob.pe/EleccionesRegionales/ReGobVic/070000