Pedro Castillo, the candidate for the openly Marxist Free Peru party, was confirmed Monday as the victor in Peru’s presidential election by the country’s election authority.
The 51-year-old former teacher enjoyed solid support from the country’s poor and rural dwellers, winning in the election’s second round in early June by a margin of 44,000 votes, according to the BBC.
“On behalf of my family I would like to salute the electoral authorities … and also to salute the political parties that have taken part in this democratic celebration,” Castillo said while addressing hundreds of supporters gathered in the country’s Capital city, Lima.
The official result was delayed after appeals from right-wing candidate Keiko Fujimori, who alleged election fraud, the BBC reported. Fujimori eventually conceded but insisted that Castillo had employed “illegitimate” ways to win, while reportedly providing very little evidence for the allegations.
— Al Jazeera English (@AJEnglish) July 20, 2021
The new president is scheduled to take office on July 28, the day Peru celebrates its independence. He will face several challenges, including an economic and health crisis, sparked by the coronavirus pandemic, and a politically polarized country, Bloomberg reported. (RELATED: Jailed Ex-Peruvian Intel Chief Burned The Bodies Of A Professor And His Students In An Oven)
In November of 2020, Peru had three presidents in less than a week, after the impeachment of Martin Vizcarra, The Washington Post reported.