In a series of Tweets on Wednesday and Thursday, President Rafael Correa thanked supporters of the Rafael Contigo Siempre campaign but said he will not seek another term in office.
“I feel great gratitude for this wonderful show of support but my decision is made,” the president said. “I owe it to my family to move on and to serve my responsibility as a husband and father.”
Although he announced his intention two years ago to leave office in 2017, Correa seemed to leave the door open to another term in recent comments. In July, he said he might reconsider if the political opposition “continues to spread lies” about his government. “Let them consider this a threat,” he added.
Correa also said he was “very confidant” that a candidate form his Alizanza Pais party would succeed him as president. “AP has some excellent talent and I feel assured that our work will continue,” he said. Current and former vice presidents, Jorge Glas and Lenin Moreno, are both polling well above opposition candidates in recent voter surveys. The party will decide on a candidate in October.
Correa personally thanked Pamela Aguirre and Stephania Baldeón, organizers of the Rafael Contigo Siempre movement. The two delivered more than 1,200,000 voter signatures to the National Electoral Council (CNE) Monday in Quito in the first step in a process to force a national referendum to allow Correa to run again. Under current law, he is not eligible to seek antoher term.
The future of Rafael Contigo Siempre is uncertain since a national referendum would cost an estimated $20 million.