José Luis Gavidia, who held the defense portfolio in the Peruvian government of Pedro Castillo, announced that he is leaving the post “for strictly personal reasons.” The resignation comes at one of the most complex points of the political crises that are taking place in the current Administration.
One more resignation is added this August 17 to the long list of setbacks accumulated by the cabinets of Pedro Castillo, president of Peru. This time it is that of José Luis Gavidia, Minister of Defense, who has held the position since last February.
In a letter addressed to Castillo, and which he posted on his personal account, Gavidia assured that he is leaving the Government “for strictly personal reasons” and assured that he is leaving “with satisfaction for having fulfilled the task entrusted to the good of the Armed Forces and the country.”
The statement ends with a request “to all political actors to join forces and live up to the demands of the country’s situation.”
The last ten days have been a particularly harsh test for the Castillo Administration, which is subject to six judicial investigations by the Prosecutor’s Office.
With satisfaction for having fulfilled the task entrusted to the good of the Armed Forces and the country, I inform you that I have submitted my resignation from the position of Minister of Defense. thank you president @PedroCastilloTe for giving me such a high honor. I will continue serving the country from the trench that touches me. pic.twitter.com/ulFJnc46ou
– José Gavidia (@JoseGavidia_) August 17, 2022
In February, Gavidia replaced Juan Carrasco, former defense minister in Castillo’s short-lived third cabinet. He was part of the bet that constituted the fourth government team in less than a year, led by the current prime minister, Aníbal Torres.
On August 3, in fact, Torres also tendered his resignation, but Castillo did not accept it. At that time, there was another change of six portfolios, but Gavidia was one of those who kept his position.
The defense minister had been involved in some scandals revealed by the local press. On the one hand, they denounced that his wife had obtained a contract in the Public Ministry; On the other hand, they reported that he had traveled on a Navy plane with his daughters.
Peruvian political tension continues to pour into the courts
Since Pedro Castillo took office in July 2021, the president has accumulated four different cabinets and a multitude of ministerial changes, in addition to judicial scandals that, according to him, are a conspiracy of the opposition and the Justice.
“The collusion between a part of Congress, the Attorney General’s Office and a sector of the press to destabilize the democratic order is evident,” Castillo said this week.
Precisely on Tuesday, the president filed a lawsuit against a police colonel, a prosecutor and a judge who allowed the search of the Government Palace, where the president lives, as part of the investigation into his sister-in-law Yenifer Paredes for influence peddling.
This investigation has further stressed the Peruvian political climate, which has not seemed to stabilize even before the elections won by Castillo.
The official discourse on judicial scandals also extends to Aníbal Torres, who a week ago branded those who investigate the president as “coup plotters” and called on social organizations to march in Lima, the Peruvian capital, to “kneel” the opponents.
For those words, Parliament approved a motion with a large majority of 73 votes in favor and 38 against for Torres to appear and explain his words.
Conservative congressman Jorge Montoya, of Popular Renewal, came to consider that the prime minister “raised subversion”, for which he filed a constitutional complaint against him for the alleged crime of conspiracy to rebel or sedition.
Thus, the political tensions between opponents and the Government continue to transform into legal entanglements and crossroads of complaints that will be settled in court.
With EFE and local media
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