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Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Ecuadorian Noboa Shows Real Face

Quito, Nov 7 (Prensa Latina) Threats of reprisals for critics plus a sensation of fear of public debate are elements that sully the electoral drive and image of Ecuadorian presidential candidate Alvaro Noboa, a potential favorite in the November 26 runoff.

Intimidations against press people questioning his government promises, including the construction of 300,000 houses a year, were denounced by the Human Rights Permanent Association and the national media.

The human rights body alerted of a death threat on Carlos Vera, director of an ECUAVISA TV program, and the bomb threat that channel received while two banana producers rapped the candidate of the Partido Renovador Institucional (Prian).

It added that Noboa recently said that Paco Velasco, director of radio station La Luna, and social leaders that had criticized the veracity of his campaign, must be tried for favoring the April 2005 overthrow of former president Lucio Gutierrez.

The multimillionaire banana magnate also promised to jail individuals such as his rival Rafael Correa that claim they will take to the streets to protest if he wins the elections.

Meanwhile, the national media are complaining about Noboa s rejection to grant press conferences and when he accedes to offer an interview, he requests the questions far in advance.

Besides, for Data Analisis pollster, his denial to face Correa, his runner-up from Alianza Pais, in a public debate denotes the sensation of fear and could dent his popularity.

Although the Prian nominee has won majority support from the poor population with his populist speech, free gifts and donations, his proposals herald an intensification of the neoliberal system in Ecuador.

1 comment:

  1. I suspect Noboa's criticism of La Luna for it's role in the overthrow of Gutierrez is twofold.

    Firstly, Noboa is plainly worried (and with good reason) that he might be overthrown by similar means in the not too distant future if he wins. The 'scare-tactics' may be him laying the ground for a more violent suppression of dissent under a Noboa presidency.

    Secondly, these declarations are also aimed at shoring up support form the populist PSP - Gutierrez's own party - which has demanded that any of the two presidential candidates who want PSP support must denounce the overthrow of Gutierrez as a "coup", and declare Palacio's government illegitimate.

    Noboa has not done this (as faras I can tell), but he's likely to have more chance of that support given Correa's short stint in the Palacio government.

    It will be instructive to see what (if anything) comes of this behaviour over the next couple of weeks.