Political dynasty heiress Fujimori aiming to make history
Keiko Fujimori (second from right) fell out with her politician brother Kenji (right) when battling to take over their father Alberto’s political mantle
For the third time, Keiko Fujimori is one step away from following her disgraced father into the top political job in Peru and becoming her country first female president.
The right wing populist has twice before been beaten in second round run offs, but this time polls have her neck and neck with socialist Pedro Castillo.
Losing out again could be the least of her problems, though, as Fujimori faces charges of taking money from scandal tainted Brazilian construction giant Odebrecht to fund her previous presidential bids in 2011 and 2016.
Prosecutors have said they would seek a prison term of 30 years and 10 months for Fujimori, 46.
She denies any wrongdoing but spent a total of 16 months in pre trial detention, and was released a second time in May 2020.
If she wins the presidency, the charges would be suspended until after her term under Peruvian law, which exempts sitting presidents from prosecution.
Serving time is nothing new in the Fujimori family.
Her father Alberto Fujimori, of Japanese descent, is currently serving a 25 year sentence for crimes against humanity and corruption.
Now 82, he was found guilty of ordering two massacres by death squads in 1991 and 1992 while president (1990 2000).
He also currently under investigation for the forced sterilization of hundreds of thousands of poor, mostly indigenous women during his final four years in power.
Keiko Fujimori, though, has always stood by her father and recently told AFP she would pardon him if elected.
“After more than 13 years in prison and having been in prison myself, and having sought my father freedom through legal means and hermes berkin replica under 50 dollars
having not received justice, I will do it,” she said.
She previously pledged to do so in 2011 when she narrowly lost the presidential election in a runoff vote to center leftist Ollanta Humala, a former army officer.
But the siblings both appeared at a closing campaign event Thursday, where the younger brother said he was “proud” of his older sister, the two even dancing together.
Despite his deeply tarnished reputation, many Peruvians still remember Alberto Fujimori fondly for how he dealt with the twin misfortunes of hyperinflation and terror.
He stamped out the Shining Path, a communist guerrilla group that carried out attacks and kidnappings, but it was in doing so that he was convicted of the two massacres.
Keiko Fujimori, though, has drawn on his successes in her attempts to woo voters at a time of renewed suffering wrought by the coronavirus pandemic and its effects on the economy.
“The health and economic tragedy reminds me of the years of terrorism and economic crisis,” Keiko Fujimori told AFP.
“It a very dramatic situation and Fujimorism has shown it has the ability to take our country forward in such difficult moments.”
Fujimori leads the Popular Force, a party mixing socially conservative populism with neoliberal capitalism. It was the official opposition from 2016 to 2020, when it suffered a crushing defeat in legislative elections.
Previously one of Peru most popular politicians, both her and her party reputations took a blow from the corruption scandal.
She is accused of accepting $1.2 million in illicit party funding from Odebrecht, now called Novonor, for her 2011 presidential campaign.
Having lost that race, she was edged out in another runoff in 2016 against center right economist Pedro Pablo Kuczynski.