External Affairs

Peru President’s Approval Ratings Fall Amid Battle With Opposition

Peru's President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski attends a binational cabinet meeting at the Government Palace in Lima, Peru, July 7, 2017. Credit: Reuters/Mariana Bazo

Peru’s President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski attends a binational cabinet meeting at the Government Palace in Lima, Peru, July 7, 2017. Credit: Reuters/Mariana Bazo

Lima: The approval rating of Peruvian President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski fell this month amid a bitter political battle with the opposition that saw the resignation of his economy minister, according to a poll released on Sunday.

Kuczynski’s approval rating fell to 34% in July from 39% in June, while his disapproval rating rose to 58% from 51% last month, the monthly poll conducted by IpsosPeru and published in local newspaper El Comercio showed.

In late June, Congress – dominated by defeated right-wing presidential candidate Keiko Fujimori’s Popular Force party – forced Economy minister Alberto Thorne to resign over allegations he improperly interfered in an airport contract, dealing a blow to Kuczynski’s business-friendly administration. Thorne has denied any wrongdoing.

“The fall in popular support for [Kuczynski] could have many reasons, among them Alfredo Thorne’s exit from the economy ministry,” Ipsos Peru President Alfredo Torres said.

Kuczynski, a former Wall Street banker who took office almost one year ago, has seen his approval rating decline from a peak of 63% in September amid a graft probe related to Brazilian builder Odebrecht and concerns over the airport contract.

Last week, Kuczynski met with Fujimori – the daughter of jailed former President Alberto Fujimori – to try to smooth over differences. Some 72% of respondents thought the meeting between the two leaders was positive for the country.

The poll of 1,280 Peruvians was conducted between July 12 and July 14 and had a margin of error of 2.7 percentage points.

(Reuters)