“I think Argentinians have understood that we’ve reached a point at which we can’t carry on living like this, when people are being asked to live a life of uncertainty, that’s just terrible”
Argentina’s opposition presidential candidate Alberto Fernández slammed President Mauricio Macri for being servile to the IMF, denouncing his record in government which he blames for the country’s spiraling economic crisis.
"As the old saying goes, you have to slap a pig to know who the owner is. I criticize Macri and it’s the IMF that answers" said the presidential candidate on Tuesday, in a campaign visit to the city of Parana.
Alberto Fernandez is running on a ticket with former leftist President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner for the ‘Front For All’ party. Polls show a strong possibility that the left could return to power, following hyperinflation and rise in unemployment over the last four years of the neoliberal government under Mauricio Macri.
A victory for the Fernandez-Fernandez ticket could also mean a progressive shift in regional geopolitics, as Macri has been a key driver behind moves to isolate Venezuela and weaken institutions of regional integration like UNASUR.
"It's your fault Macri, they don't trust you, I would like to live in the world presented by government adverts, but the problem is that they have nothing to do with reality," Fernandez said blaming Macri for inflation and currency devaluation.
Under President Macri, Argentina has taken a multibillion-dollar loan from the IMF in exchange for privatizations and deregulation. Argentina now has an annual inflation rate of over 55 percent in contrast to their neighbor Bolivia, under leftist President Evo Morales who saw an inflation rate of just 2.3 percent for the whole of 2018.
A recent study showed sharp rises in poverty levels, especially among senior citizens, 70 percent of whom are “unable to cover basic needs.”
Also at the event, Fernandez said the election would be characterized by issues of poverty. “I think Argentinians have understood that we’ve reached a point at which we can’t carry on living like this, when people are being asked to live a life of uncertainty, that’s just terrible.”
Primary elections are taking place on August 11 and final general elections on October 27th. A week after Bolivia’s presidential elections. A victory for the left in both countries could mark the end of the right-wing turn in Latin America.