LIMA – Businessman Cesar Acuña filed a special appeal with the JNE national elections agency in a bid to stay on the ballot in Peru’s April 10 presidential election.
The 63-year-old Acuña had accepted a JNE ruling last week that he was ineligible to run for president because his campaign had distributed money to voters.
Acuña’s Alliance for Progress in Peru, or APP, party said in its appeal that the JNE’s decision “does not comply with the legal framework” for elections.
The APP contends that the Lima Special Electoral Board does not have the legal authority to bar a candidate and its decision “amounts to an extremely serious violation of due process.”
Acuña filed the appeal on Saturday, the deadline for doing so, and the JNE has three days to issue a final ruling that cannot be appealed.
Economist Julio Guzman, meanwhile, also filed an appeal on Saturday of the JNE’s decision to drop him from the ballot.
The JNE ruled last Wednesday that Guzman, leader of the All for Peru party, violated internal party rules for choosing a candidate.
Guzman said in a Facebook post that he was “confident that the new evidence” presented “will bring about justice.”
“The will of the people must be protected,” Guzman said, adding that he was the only candidate who can “beat Mrs. Fujimori.”
Keiko Fujimori, daughter of former President Alberto Fujimori, is the leader in the polls ahead of the election.
Guzman told EFE last Thursday that if he was kept off the ballot, “there would be many doubts about the legitimacy of those elected.”
The economist, who served as deputy industry minister in President Ollanta Humala’s administration, said “it would be the first time that a presidential candidate is dropped (from the ballot) in Peru for administrative reasons.”
Guzman was in second place in the polls, drawing the support of 18 percent of likely voters, while Fujimori has 33 percent support in the latest polls.
A poll shows Fujimori’s support rising to 37 percent with Guzman out of the race, while former Cabinet minister Pedro Pablo Kuczynski has 14 percent support.