Brazilian businessman Marcelo Odebrecht told a team of prosecutors last November that “with certainty” his company supported former Peruvian Presidents Alan García, Alejandro Toledo and Ollanta Humala as well as opposition leader Keiko Fujimori, the daughter of former dictator Alberto Fujimori.
“With certainty we supported everyone: Toledo, Alan García, Humala, Keiko,” Odebrecht said at a meeting on Nov. 9 in the Brazilian city of Curitiba referring to the top Peruvian politicians, according to an audio published by the investigative journalism portal IDL-Reporters Friday night.
“Our intention was to support as many opposition candidates, even when knowing that they were not going to be elected, we supported them in some way, because the opposition can also create problems. One way to create a network is with support.”
The news of the comments comes just a week after Keiko Fujimori’s opposition party narrowly lost a motion to impeach Peru’s President Pablo Kuczynski for allegedly receiving nearly US$800,000 in kickbacks from the Brazilian construction company Odebrecht.
In the audio, which Peru’s top prosecutor’s office received just days ago, Odebrecht says Kuczynski “was hired as an economic consultant for some consultancies and presentations, after being a minister and before being a candidate.”
Kuczynski and Fujimori were questioned Thursday, separately and privately, by prosecutors at the government palace and the offices of the country’s prosecutor, respectively, according to Peru’s El Comercio.
The country is also undergoing political turmoil over Peru’s President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski pardon of the country’s former dictator Fujimori halfway through his 25-prison sentence over crimes against humanity.
Thousands have been taking to the streets against the pardon arguing that it was a political move by the president to appease the pro-Fujimori opposition and sway them away from seeking his impeachment over the Odebrecht-related corruption charges.