Opposition parties spurn Peru president’s offer to talk

World Today

In a rare move, Peru’s government has called for talks with the political opposition, in a decision that came amid major questions over Peruvian President Ollanta Humala’s administration. However key opposition players didn’t take him up on his offer. CCTV’s Dan Collyns reported this story from Lima, Peru.

“We should build up the Peruvian people’s trust in the maturity of their political leaders to act together for the common good of the country,” Ana Jara, Peru’s prime minister said. “In spite of differences of opinions we may have.”

After a series of political intrigues and blows to his authority, Humala’s government is struggling to leave office on a high, but many question how useful cross-party dialogue can be without the presence of the main opposition leaders.

Opposition parties spurn Peru president’s offer to talk

In a rare move, Peru's government has called for talks with the political opposition, in a decision that came amid major questions over Peruvian President Ollanta Humala's administration. However key opposition players didn't take him up on his offer. CCTV's Dan Collyns reported this story from Lima, Peru.

Analysts have said lack of usefulness of a cross-party conversation is part of the problem in a country that has lost faith in its political leaders.

Low popularity for presidents is nothing new in Peru, but as legislators desert Humala’s governing block, he risks losing control over congress in the final year-and-a-half of his government.

“It’s excessive to call this a crisis. Historically, leaders’ approval ratings are very low, and distrust in the country’s institutions is very high,” newspaper columnist Fernando Vivas said. “We Peruvians maintain ourselves in this kind of precarious governability.”

The end of the commodities boom has hit Peru hard. Last year the economy grew at less than three percent — that’s half the average rate of the past decade.

As the economy weakens, questions have bee raised about Humala’s ability to push through the necessary reforms before the 2016 presidential election..

After insults and heightened tensions on both sides, finding consensus — even for the good of the economy — will prove a challenge.