President supports reunification of Peruvian electoral bodies

President Alan García showed interest in talks about re-unifying the three bodies that form part of the electoral system in Peru. National Election Jury (JNE) chairmen Enrique Mendoza indicated that fusion with Nacional Office of Electoral Processes (ONPE) would reduce the costs of the next elections by 46%.

The president encouraged debate, citing the conditions under which the ONPE and the National Register of Identity and Civil Status (RENIEC) were created. “These were the creations of the post-coup constitution of 1993 with a view to weakening the institution and prestige of the JNE,” he maintained.

For that reason, he claimed that “it would be desirable to start talks now to analyze the possible reunification of these elements (JNE, ONPE and RENIEC),” after meeting with the JNE chairman at the Palace of Government.

At another time he questioned the cost of election in Peru, calling them “the highest in South America.” “In 2006 we spent 390 million soles on their organization and carrying out. All this could have been done just as effectively for half the price.”

For his part, Mendoza argued that the reunification of the three electoral entities would represent a saving to the state of 46% for the next elections, and that had it been applied before the 2006 elections spending would have been 160 to 170 million soles lower. He denied that this fusion could lead to a lack of transparency, as ONPE chief Magdalena Chú stated yesterday afternoon, saying that she was defending the separation of the official bodies for her own personal reasons.

“Perhaps she is defending her position, her job, but it should not be that way, as in reforms there will always be activities such as logistics” he said.

Scooped from Peru.21

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