The people of Ecuador are rising up to refound their country as a pluri-national homeland for all. This inspiring movement, with Ecuador's indigenous peoples at its heart, is part of the revolution spreading across the Americas, laying the groundwork for a new, fairer, world. Ecuador Rising aims to bring news and analysis of events unfolding in Ecuador to english speakers.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Ecuador’s Correa manages support for reform plans

Sunday, January 14, 2007


Ecuadorian elected President Rafael Correa, flanked by Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez and Bolivia’s Evo Morales announced Sunday that “a new day is dawning” promising to rule for the indigenous, the migrants and the excluded.

US educated Correa who will be sworn in Monday said that the “long neo-liberal night is coming to an end” adding that the derelict “molding clay” democracy is over anticipating that “a sovereign, dignified, just and socialist Latin America is beginning to rise”.

Correa’s statements were done during a symbolic swearing-in ceremony among indigenous groups in the Andes which pledged him support and he addressed in quichua language wearing an Andean poncho.

Calling on his supporters to follow the wise steps of ancestors and outstanding Latinamerican leaders, Correa highlighted among others the Argentine-Cuban revolutionary “Che” Guevara whom he described as an example of maximum sacrifice and dedication to the people”.

“Forward ‘til victory, God bless the fatherland and Latinamerica” said Correa.
However the incoming president also called on the Ecuadorian people to support the convening of a Constitutional Assembly with full powers, as he promised during his electoral campaign.

With the Assembly “we’re not talking about little reforms, about making things less bad” but rather a complete modification of the “collapsed structures” that burden Ecuador. “My duty as president is complete your mandate for profound change`` he said.

Correa who run on an anti-system ticket and has no representatives in Ecuador’s one house legislative branch because his party fielded no candidates, has nevertheless managed to build a left wing and center left majority support of 54, out of a 100 Congress members, which should ensure the convening of the constitutional assembly, one of the first acts he has promised following the swearing in ceremony Monday.

Furthermore according to Quito’s press the new conformation of the Supreme Electoral Tribunal, voted by Correa’s support group in Congress, means another potential obstacle for the assembly has been eliminated.

This however has forced the incoming Home Secretary Gustavo Larrea to emphasize that no “political dealings” or “exchange of favors” have been agreed with Sociedad Patriotica and its 24 Congressional votes that have been crucial to put the reform promises on track.

“Nothing has been promised but to work together to achieve the reforms and transformations the country needs”, said Larrea who added that from the very beginning “we promised we would not be involved in Legislative-Executive confrontations”.

The statement was forthcoming since elected President Correa’s party during the campaign considered the unicameral Congress not a representative of the people but rather of the “political mafias” interests.

Ecuador rich in hydrocarbons has 42% of its 13.5 million population (65% indigenous) living below the poverty line. Although a formal “democracy” for over a quarter of a century, Ecuador’s fragile institutions and weakened political parties system have been involved in recurrent Congress/Executive clashes which has seen eight different presidents since 1996.

Correa who admits he’s a good friend of Venezuela’s Chavez has denied “admiration” for the Bolivarian revolution leader. He receives a country with pending oil and trade differences with United States; a potential conflict with international banks regarding interest payments on sovereign debt and disputes with neighboring Colombia over refuges and massive border fumigations as a result of the ongoing war of Bogotá against drug barons and organized terrorist gangs.

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