Peru: New Government, They Must All Go

By Alberto Giovanelli

Just hours ago the Peruvian political leadership has formalized an attempt to channel the crisis that erupted in recent days, appointing Francisco Sagasti as the new transitional President until the April 2021 elections.

After the removal of Martín Vizcarra at the beginning of the previous week, his replacement Manuel Merino had to resign, overthrown by popular mobilization. For more than 24 hours the country did not have formally designated authorities and the appointment of Sagasti is an attempt to try to respond to the demands expressed in the streets and to channel through elections the discontent against the political caste and the demand that “everyone should go” thunders in every street demonstration.

Sagasti, a center-right engineer, who has participated in various governments over the last twenty years, is today a congressman for the Purple Party of Julio Guzmán, an entrepreneur that is presented as an outsider of politics, who came to the rescue of the “institutions” through the dubious prestige gained by being the only party that opposed Vizcarra’s removal. The “purple” administration will be accompanied by a wide variegated arc that reaches the Broad Front of the ex-priest Arana, who gives the new government a center left tone. The central task that they propose is to stop the mobilizations and keep the General Strike announced for next Wednesday from taking place or at least for it to be limited to an expression of protest led by the old union leaders who have been completely discredited in the mass movement.

For these reasons, the International Socialist League insists that the working people and the youth should not place the slightest trust in the new government, and that only the continuity in the streets and the general strike is a guarantee for finding a way out in favor of the great popular majorities. This solution goes hand in hand with the call for a free and sovereign National Constituent Assembly, to debate how to turn everything around by developing from below, from the worker, student and peasant organizations the possibility for those who have never governed, the workers and the people, to govern in Peru.