Peruvian President Martín Vizcarra announced the dissolution of the opposition-dominated parliament and early elections in a television speech on Monday. The parliamentary and presidential elections would typically take place on April 2021. A few hours later, however, the parliament suspended the president for a year.
“No agreement is possible with the opposition,” the president justified his decision. He thereby referred to the appointment of a judge to the Constitutional Court, a case that is currently causing a heated debate in parliament. According to 56-year-old Vizcarra, who succeeded Pedro Pablo Kuczynski in 2018, the decision falls under his constitutional powers.
The opposition, however, accuses him of exceeding his powers. A few hours later, the ‘dissolved’ parliament sent President Vizcarra home: he was suspended for one year. Constitutional experts do not agree among themselves who is currently in power in the country.
The power struggle threatens to cause unrest in the country that has been confronted with considerable political volatility in recent years. The Peruvian court is currently conducting a major corruption scandal investigation into four former presidents of Peru. These are Alejandro Toledo (2001-2006), Ollanta Humala (2011-2016), Pedro Pablo Kuczynski (2016-2018) and Alan Garcia (1985-1990 and 2006-2011), who committed suicide in April when the police in him to pick up his home.
Armed forces support the president
The Peruvian newspaper El Comercio has published a press release from the national police and the various armed forces in the night from Monday to Tuesday, in which they declare themselves loyal to President Martín Vizcarra.