The president of Peru's Congress, Daniel Salaverry of the Popular Force party, said Monday he expects Congress to approve the anti-corruption reforms sent by the executive branch by October 4, the deadline to call for a national referendum by December 9. However, several Popular Force legislators have rejected the deadline "imposed" by the executive.
"We are moving forward, there are 10 days left to fulfill the commitment we made from Congress to the people to have these four bills approved, and we must honor that commitment," Salaverry told local channel N.
Earlier this year, due to a corruption scandal that hit the country's judicial system, president Martin Vizcarra sent four anti-corruption reforms to Congress. So far, only one has received congressional approval while three remain pending.
Last week, after Vizcarra called for a no-confidence vote to pressure Congress, legislators unanimously approved the legal ruling to reform the National Judicial Council (CNM), which would change the name of the institution to Junta Nacional de Justicia, or National Board of Justice, and change the way its members are elected.
The three other reforms that have not received Congress’ approval include eliminating reelection for legislators, reinstituting a bicameral Congress, and more financial control over political parties.
Salaverry comments were made hours before the chief of staff for the government Cesar Villanueva spoke before the Constitutional Commission to explain the details on the proposal to reinstitute a bicameral Congress.
The proposal includes creating a Senate with 30 members elected in six districts, and a Chamber of representatives with 100 members elected in micro districts.
Ursula Letona, the spokesperson for the Popular Force legislative bench, criticized the Salaverry saying Congress "has surrendered its constitutional right to debate such an important reform... We have been given a deadline... And the truth is that with the rebelliousness that characterizes me I refuse to approve this type of reform in this way."