Following a closely contested election, the leftist Pedro Castillo has obtained the most votes. The loser, right wing Keiko Fujimori, following Trump’s example, has declared fraud without providing any evidence but as a result, a winner cannot be formally declared until her legal challenges are adjudicated.
With all ballots now counted, Mr Castillo has just over 50% of the votes – 44,000 more than right-wing contender Keiko Fujimori.
More than 18.8 million Peruvians cast their votes in this year’s race – a turnout of nearly 75%. Observers have said it could take weeks to deliberate over Ms Fujimori’s legal challenges and formally announce a winner.
While Castillo has some very regressive views on issues of LGBTQ rights and abortion, Fujimori comes from an utterly corrupt family, strengthening the similarities with Trump.
Keiko Fujimori is the daughter of former President Alberto Fujimori, who is in jail serving a 25-year sentence for crimes including corruption and human rights abuses.
Ms Fujimori herself is being investigated for alleged corruption and money laundering, claims she says are politically motivated. She spent a total of 13 months in jail between 2018 and 2020, when she was released on parole.
Last week, in a surprise development, prosecutor José Domingo Pérez requested that Ms Fujimori be returned to pre-trial custody, alleging that she had been in contact with a witness, violating the terms of her parole.
It seems incredible that given her background, she could have come this far and come so close to the presidency. Peruvian voters seem to be like many Americans in their willingness to back a highly flawed candidate.