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News > Latin America

Ecuador Rejects 2019 OAS Electoral Mission, Claims Austerity

  • The Ecuadorean in-transition CNE rejects the OAS electoral verification mission.

    The Ecuadorean in-transition CNE rejects the OAS electoral verification mission. | Photo: Twitter: @CNEPresidencia

Published 8 November 2018

The Ecuadorean National Electoral Council, currently in transition, rejected an OAS electoral mission, citing austerity policies.

The National Electoral Council (CNE) of Ecuador, which is in transition as part of an institutional reorganization process the South American country is undertaking, has declared that it won't proceed with the International Certification ISO 17582, issued to the CNE through a collaborative agreement with the Organization of American States (OAS).

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Citing the austerity policies in the country, spearheaded by President Lenin Moreno's neoliberal policies, Gustavo Vega president of the in-transition CNE, said that the international certification was too expensive, costing upwards of US$ 35,000 with additional costs later " that are not in tune with the country's austerity policy."

Adding that the certification was mostly just a bureaucratic complement to the process, Vega also stated that the in-transiton CNE has not planned for the presence of the OAS saying, "we, as a verification agency have rejected it." However, the OAS can ask to be present through the Ecuadorean Foreign Ministry.

"Particularly there has been a confrontation with national sovereignty in the sense that it (OAS) has been critical of the referendum that President Lenin Moreno launched with the extraordinarily high endorsement of citizen support. The OAS should not put its nose in the sovereignty of the country. This is a decision to enforce sovereignty. The OAS is not a neutral organization with regard to the turn the country has made," Vega said.

In February, Ecuador held a referendum promoted by President Lenin Moreno. One of the questions proposed the restructuring of the Citizens Participation and Social Control Council (CPCCS), and terminating the constitutional term of its members. The question also allowed for the designation of a temporary council. The council represents a fifth branch of power of the Ecuadorean state, along with the executive, legislative, judicial and electoral powers. It is in charge of designating the state attorney, all superintendents, the ombudsman, the public defender, the attorney general, the comptroller general, and the members of the National Electoral Council and judges of the Constitutional Court.

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"The CNE Plenary did not consider adequate, pertinent and logical, based on the sovereignty of Ecuador, that one of the ISOs, that is, the OAS certification, be exercised for the next electoral process."

On Mar 24, 2019, Ecuadoreans will head to the polls for regional elections. The Ecuadorean people will elect the representatives of the different local governments, who will be in power until 2023. Ecuadoreans will elect 23 prefects, 23 vice-prefects, 221 mayors, 868 city councilors, 437 rural councilors, 4,084 main members of the parish councils and seven councilors of the CPCCS. In total 11,059 authorities, between principals and substitutes, will be chosen.

The Decentralized Autonomous Governments (GADs) were created, based on the 2008 Constitution, promoted by the Citizen Revolution (Alianza Pais) led by former President Rafael Correa

"What we have to understand is that this is part of an international strategy. But the world looks away. How outrageous is the international hypocrisy and double standards? If I had done to an opponent what they did with Lula we would already be invaded. If we had broken the constitution as this government has broken, we would already be sued all over the world. In Ecuador there is a coup d'état, there is repression, there is torture. The world must know this situation that is part of a global strategy, as they can not beat us in the ballot box they apply lawfare," Correa told exclusively to teleSUR.

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