Martín Vizcarra says he will not run for re-election in 2021

Peru's President told CNN: "I'll be handing over the flag to my successor" in 2021

martin vizcarra (Courtesy of Presidencia Peru)

After being thrust into the presidency earlier this year due to Pedro Pablo Kuczynski’s resignation, Martín Vizcarra says he will not attempt to extend his stay in the Government Palace for a second term.

In an interview with CNN on Monday, Peru’s President told the news channel that he will not put his hat in the ring for the next presidential elections in three years.

“Be sure that on July 28, 2021 I will be handing over the flag to my successor,” he said.

“No, I’m not going to run in 2021,” he went on. “I’m satisfied leaving the country headed on the right path with a solid and sustainable base towards the future and development and from there I’ll be a common and active citizen.”

He told CNN that the opposition-ruled Congress would be wasting its time trying to find ways to prevent his re-election.

A Congressman from Popular Action has already proposed a bill that cites a Constitutional article in an attempt to prevent Vizcarra’s re-election.

Recently, it came to light that Vizcarra held secret meetings with opposition party leader Keiko Fujimori of the Popular Force. In admitting to the behind-the-doors talks, Vizcarra claimed that Fujimori requested to be the first one privy to actions the Executive Branch would take before they were announced.

Vizcarra’s presidency has, so far, been defined by the outpour of scandal happening in the judiciary. After audio tapes revealed that top judges and magistrates in the country were giving favors and accepting bribes, the President has said he will be strict and quick in making reform to that branch. Without seeing fruits to the labor of the promised judicial reform board, however, criticism has come over Vizcarra from places like the Church, where at least one official has said action needs to be carried out more quickly.

In the same CNN interview at the Government Palace, Vizcarra addressed the concerns and said his administration will do whatever it takes to root out judicial corruption.

“We’ve said that we can’t rule out any measure for achieving the goal of fighting against and destroying corruption that has hurt Peru so much,” Vizcarra told CNN. “But now we’re deciding to combat it.”

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