June 2, 2006

Pollsters see Garcia win in Peruvian election

LIMA, Peru (Reuters) - Leftist former President Alan Garcia
is seen winning Peru's presidential election on Sunday, even
though his advantage over nationalist former army commander
Ollanta Humala has shrunk, pollsters said on Friday.

A University of Lima poll showed Garcia taking 55.9 percent
of the vote and Humala 44.1 percent while a CPI poll gave
Garcia 53.8 percent and Humala 46.2 percent.

Pollsters met with members of the foreign press on Friday
to distribute their latest numbers, which cannot be published
in local media during the week before elections under Peruvian

A previous poll by CPI showed Garcia with almost 60 percent
of the vote.

"Attacks on Garcia have apparently worked in Humala's
favor," said CPI Director Manuel Saavedra.

Humala has accused Garcia, whose 1985-1990 government left
the economy in ruin, of corruption and robbery.

"The gap has narrowed but Garcia's fall is softer in the
last full days than earlier ... Humala has won points since the
(presidential) debate because his strategy of attacking Garcia
is working," said Luis Benavente, director of the University of
Lima polling group.

Saavedra said Humala has also gained some ground in Lima,
the capital, where Garcia has had higher support.

The University of Lima poll surveyed 2,361 adults, and its
polling sample represented 87 percent of the voting population.
The margin of error was plus or minus 2 percentage points.

The University of Lima conducted a vote simulation survey
in which respondents place their anonymous vote in a fake
election urn rather than revealing their choice to pollsters.

CPI did not provide technical details on its poll.