During Peruvian elections, it is illegal to sell alcoholic beverages. This regulation, known as the “dry law” (ley seca), is ostensibly meant to prevent citizens from committing what one might call a “V.U.I.”– that is, voting under the influence. The ban begins 48 hours before the day of the election, and ends at twelve noon the day after voting took place, for a total of 84 bone dry hours.
While that might be a rather cheeky take on the ley seca, the temporary alcohol ban also serves to discourage unruly public behavior during election times. Tempers around the world run high when elected positions are at stake, and Peru is no exception. Banning alcohol is (arguably, at least) one way to prevent citizens from becoming belligerent if things don’t go their way, politically speaking.
This year’s elections will take place on Sunday, Nov. 24. According to Andina news agency, the dry law will come into effect at 12:00 AM on Friday, Nov. 22. In case you’re having trouble with the math, that means that you have until 11:59 on Thursday night to purchase alcoholic beverages from stores and eating and drinking establishments.
A congressional committee recently approved a bill that would have shortened the temporary prohibition from 84 hours to 24 hours. However, at the time of publishing, it had not been approved by a full session of congress. Though preliminary measures to shorten “ley seca” alcohol ban were taken, law has yet to be approved by Peruvian congress.