LIMA – Newly inaugurated Peruvian President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski said on Thursday he was fully committed to fighting corruption and would have no qualms about going after anyone who engages in that activity.
In an address following his swearing-in ceremony, Kuczynski said the battle against corruption would be one of the pillars of his administration and a key element in his plans to make Peru more modern, fair and egalitarian during his five-year term.
“To achieve that, we need a president who is fully committed to the anti-corruption fight. Be assured that in that (battle) I won’t have any qualms; whoever goes astray will be brought before the justice system, which must be thoroughly reformed.”
The Peruvian president announced the creation of “special authority dedicated to battling corruption with all necessary independence and autonomy,” adding that it was essential for the rest of society to be committed to the effort and denounce corruption-related crimes.
“I invite you, especially this Congress, to fight this scourge with me. I won’t allow my closest staff members and colleagues to fall in the indignity of corruption,” he added.
Transparency International, which monitors corruption levels worldwide, ranked Peru the 88th “cleanest” country out of 168 countries assessed globally for 2015.
In Latin America, Peru was the eighth cleanest behind Uruguay (21st), Chile (23rd), Costa Rica (40th), Cuba (56th), Panama (72nd), Brazil (76th) and Colombia (83rd).
The 77-year-old president also said his administration would focus on ensuring the entire population has access to potable water and high-quality public services, bringing workers into the formal economy “as much as possible,” investing in infrastructure to spur development and battling crime and discrimination.
Kuczynski took the oath of office in Congress in a ceremony attended by Spanish King Emeritus Juan Carlos and the presidents of Paraguay, Horacio Cartes; Argentina, Mauricio Macri; Mexico, Enrique Peña Nieto; Chile, Michelle Bachelet; Ecuador, Rafael Correa; and Colombia, Juan Manuel Santos.