Although the current extended legislature is due to come to an end on 30 January, Congressional President Daniel Salaverry has called for a meeting of party representatives for 28 January to decide on the future make-up of parliamentary committees. The reshuffle (which normally only takes place in August after a new set of presiding officers are elected in July) is required because of recent changes in the party line-up. Following a series of defections, the Fujimorista Fuerza Popular (FP) no longer has an absolute majority of seats.
Three new groupings have come into being called Peru21, Unidos por la República and the Liberals. With the incorporation of Paloma Noceda into Acción Popular, those in opposition to the Fujimoristas now have 63 seats. FP has 55 seats, while APRA (which tends to side with FP) has five. A further seven legislators are not part of any of these groupings. They may join an established group, or they might seek to create new ones.
Also in the mix are the legislators who could be stripped of their immunity. If they are convicted, it would further change the parliamentary arithmetic. FP’s Moises Mamani, accused of harassing a flight attendant, has been suspended and the judiciary has given Salaverry the necessary documentation for legal proceedings against him to begin. Mamani is not alone. Others like Héctor Becerril, who have been hitherto protected by FP (through its control of the congressional ethics committee) are also now at risk.