Peru Left Candidate Slams K. Fujimori over Corruption

Saturday, 19 March, 2016 - 20:30

Protests have grown in recent weeks against Keiko Fujimori, slamming her father's dictatorship legacy and demanding she be cut from the ballot.

Peru’s leftist presidential candidate Veronika Mendoza echoed calls for controversial front-runner Keiko Fujimori to be booted from the race over corruption as electoral authorities ruled that the presidential hopeful did not give illegal gifts, the Peruvian daily La Republica reported Friday.

“They should take Keiko out given that there are photos and videos of circumstances in which she distributes money,” said Mendoza, according to La Republica.

“If they want to maintain a minimum of legitimacy and credibility they should be coherent in their decisions and measure everyone with the same yardstick,” she added, referring to electoral authorities responding to six citizen complaints against Fujimori for electoral fraud.

Authorities of the country’s National Electoral Jury ruled on Thursday that Fujimori did not directly give gifts at an event hosted by a youth branch of her Popular Force party called Factor K. But the body did determine that another party backer gave away money and that the event was aimed at recruiting support, local media reported.

Fujimori has attempted to distance herself from Factor K, denying any wrongdoing.

But despite the announcement, it is still not definitive whether Fujimori will stay in the race or not, just weeks ahead of the April 10 election. A higher authority, the Special Electoral Jury, has final say over rulings on electoral law and has demanded a full report on the matter.

 Despite the accusations against Fujimori and a series of massive protests in the capital city Lima against her candidacy, the former dictator's daughter continues to lead the polls with 37 percent.

Her main contender is Pedro Pablo Kuczynski with 15 percent, followed by Alfredo Barnechea with 11 percent and Veronika Mendoza with 9 percent, according to a CPI poll conducted between March 13 and 16.