Published 17/05/2023 16:45 | Edited 5/17/2023 6:53 PM
This Wednesday (17), the president of Ecuador, Guillermo Lasso, announced the dissolution of the National Assembly and called new legislative and presidential elections. The measure comes amid an impeachment process for Lasso, who could be removed from his presidential duties by the Assembly next Saturday, since the opposition is a majority in the house.
He is accused of embezzlement in the case of corruption in the management of the state oil company Flopec.
As a way of not being removed and still gaining some more time in office until new elections are scheduled, Lasso decreed the “cross death” mechanism that allows the calling of new elections for the Executive and Legislative. Until elections take place, in which all those ousted can run, the right-wing president will rule by decree for a maximum period of six months.
The action was seen as a maneuver, as he would lose his mandate and now he won a ‘survival’ without having to submit his decisions to the deputies.
Among the justifications for the decree, Lasso indicated “political crisis and internal commotion”.
In a speech on national television, the president said: “I decided to apply Article 148 of the Constitution of the Republic, which authorizes me to dissolve the National Assembly due to a serious political crisis and internal commotion. Therefore, I signed Executive Decree number 741. Furthermore, I asked the National Electoral Council to immediately call legislative and presidential elections for the remainder of the period. This is a democratic decision. Not only because it is constitutional, but because it gives back to the Ecuadorian people, to you, the power to decide your future in the next elections”.
The mandate of the president and the deputies would last until May 2025, a period that will be fulfilled by the newly elected ones if the decree is maintained.
The former president of Ecuador, Rafael Correa, who opposes the current government, pointed out the irregularity of Lasso’s decree in using a mechanism created by him when he was president, but noted that the situation is an opportunity.
“What Lasso does is illegal. Obviously there is no “internal commotion”. [Ele] it just couldn’t buy enough Assembly members to save itself. Anyway, this is a great opportunity to get rid of Lasso, his government and his rented parliamentarians, and take back the Fatherland.