Verónika Mendoza, candidate for the left-wing Frente Amplio, has announced that as of 2 December she will be spearheading a campaign to collect enough signatures to register a new grouping, known as the Movimiento por el Nuevo Perú, as an official party. To do so will require up to a million signatures. The campaign will be launched in Mendoza’s home region of Cuzco, where she enjoys strong political support.

In the recent general election, the Frente Amplio relied on the registration of Tierra y Libertad (TyL), but Mendoza is seeking to free herself of this constraint. There have been several points of friction since between herself and Marco Arana, who leads TyL. In particular, TyL has seen a number of defections in recent weeks of senior people moving towards Mendoza. The creation of the Movimiento por el Nuevo Perú will not mean, its leaders emphasise, an open split within the Frente Amplio. Both it and TyL will be twin organisations within the Frente.

It is worth remembering that in the April elections, in which the Frente (with Mendoza as candidate) came third behind the Fujimorista Fuerza Popular (FP) and Kuczynski’s Peruanos por el Kambio (PPK). It polled 2.8 million votes. It electoral strength was primarily in southern Peru. To comply with the Law on Political Parties it will have two years in which to collect the requisite number of signatures. The Movimiento por el Nuevo Perú will include militants from the Partido Socialista, the Movimiento Sembrar Pueblo Unido, the Movimiento por la Gran Transformación, Dignidad y Democracia and the group of people who abandoned TyL.