In Peru President Alan Garcia has appointed Yehude Simon as the new prime minister. Former Prime Minister Jorge del Castillo resigned, with his government, on Friday, ahead of a motion of censure that he was likely to lose.
President Garcia’s poll rating are extremely low – around 20% approval – and his appointment of Prime Minister Simon is designed to help quell the social unrest. Simon was imprisoned under President Fujimori for apparently supporting the Tupac Amaru guerrillas, though he was pardoned when Fujimori fled the country. Simon is seen as a left-wing figure and he is the governor of the Lambayeque region.
Interestingly, Peruvian Times reports that in September Simon announced that he would run for the presidency in 2011. Assuming Garcia runs again for the presidency, this will institutionalise competition within the executive until the next election or until the new PM leaves office.
The previous government resigned in the wake of an alleged kick-back scandal concerning a Norwegian oil company.