Peru: PPK and Fujimorismo Butt Heads over Peruvian Education
The president of Peru, Pedro Pablo Kuczynski, is at a kind of crossroads, having to define his relationship with Fujimorismo, in the context of an unfolding situation with the Minister of Education, Jaime Saavedra.
The Congress of the Republic has an absolute opposition majority linked to Keiko Fujimori’s Fuerza Popular party, which is leading the charge to call for the removal of the minister.
Among the possible scenarios, would be the departure of Saavedra, although PPK had expressed his desire maintain education minister Saavedra to head one of the most criticized sectors of the country. While in 2012 Peru was ranked in last place in the PISA rankings (comparative international measures of educational quality), by 2015, Peru rose to 64th out of 70.
It is important to remember that since July of this year, the Minister of Education has been the subject of many accusations of corruption and inefficiency, leveled by Fujimorismo and their allies in Congress; they are the ones who called him into a hearing before Congress last Wednesday.
According to the website El País, Saavedra and PPK are very interested in closely examining several private for-profit universities which were established under a 1998 law that sought to promote investment in education. These universities wield great economic and political influence, and are even associated with 16 current members of Peru’s Congress.
Saavedra’s hearing lasted more than 11 hours during which he was subjected to a no-holds-barred inquisition by the Fuerza Popular party. Saavedra’s “Ley Universitaria” of 2014, which seeks to establish higher standards in Peruvian education, has been a focal point of hearings
The spokesman for Fujimori’s party, Luis Galarreta, said that “For the children and for the fight against corruption, we are going to file a motion to censure Minister Saavedra.”
PPK is facing the first big challenge of his presidency, and if it remains to be seen whether he will continue to back Saavedra, or bow to the demands of the Fuerza Popular party.
Source: El País