Easter holiday restrictions announced; City plans to vaccinate 66% of residents; Loja health system collapses; Foot washing and cross kissing restricted

Mar 31, 2021 | 5 comments

Martes, 30/3/2021

Hola, Todos –

Actividades –

Otras cosas –

Titular – A evitar contagios (To avoid contagion) – The national COE made resolutions for the Semana Santa that included restricting vehicles on the roads of the country and prohibiting liquor sales after 18:00 from jueves a sábado, and all day on domingo. Beaches in the country will also be closed during the holiday. The provincial COE will also abide by these restrictions. <Not that I can think of any beaches in Azuay.> The cantonal COE will meet tomorrow to decide if vehicle restrictions will apply within the City of Cuenca or if there will be different measures. José Jaramillo, Gobernador of Azuay who also presides over the provincial COE, said that vehicles will not be allowed to circulate el jueves 1/4 and sábado 3/4 between 00:00 and 12:00 on the roads connecting Azuay with other provinces. On viernes 2/4 and domingo 4/4, the restrictions will apply to vehicles with plates ending in an even numbers including 0. <This is confusing and I think what’s missing is that plates ending in odd numbers can’t circulate on Thu. and Sat., but I wouldn’t bet the fine for a moving violation on that.> The restriction includes inter- and intra- provincial buses. Exceptions are for the strategic sector and drivers in the food and medicine supply chain who have the proper certifications.

As of lunes, there were 14,583 confirmed cases in Cuenca with 235 in the last week. ICU beds in the public hospitals were 92% occupied.

Long-distance bus travel will be restricted for Easter holidays. (El Mercurio)

Municipalidad firma un acuerdo para la vacunación masiva (Municipality signs agreement for mass vaccination) – The city signed an agreement with the Ministerio de Salud Pública (MSP) to coordinate vaccinating at least 66% of the population of Cuenca in the next few months. The agreement would be to immunize every front line worker, seniors, and those over 18 who are within parameters established by the Organización Panamericana para la Salud. The agreement does not have direct purchase of vaccines as the objective, but coordination and logistics of getting people their jabs. The City has already been coordinating vaccinations since Phase 1 started last month. Yesterday, 576 seniors were vaccinated in the Coliseo Jefferson Pérez and another 576 at the UPS (Universidad Politécnica Salesiana). <Any of you readers in that bunch?> Data from the Coordinación Zonal 6 shows that as of ayer, 44,500 people have been vaccinated in el Austro (South) with hopes/expectations that 200,000 will be vaccinated by 24/5.

Contrato de médicos depende de 3 factores (Doctors’ contracts depend on 3 factors) – The zonal health coordinator, Julio Molina, said that definitive contracts for front line doctors at the Vicente Corral Moscoso Hospital will not be immediate. Last week the doctors and health personnel at the hospital wrote a public letter asking that they be guaranteed job stability as state in the Ley Humanitaria. Molina said there are at least 3 factors influencing the issuance of contracts. Contracts are awarded through a competition which is being worked on. The hospital administration is absorbing District 2 of the MSP which is slowing the delivery of contracts. The last is overcoming the hiring of front line doctors who are being paid from other budget line items. <Or something like that.>

Semana Santa con restricciones (Easter with restrictions) – See yesterday’s article on Semana Santa for the schedule of services. Rituals that will be omitted this year include footwashing, the procession and the monument to the Blessed Sacrament, and the traditional visit to the 7 Churches. In the liturgy of the Adoration of the Cross, kissing the cross will be for the celebrant and not the congregation who will observe a moment of silence and a deep bow from their pew. <Kissing a cross sounds like an efficient way to spread a virus. Please excuse me if I’ve mistranslated the names of the rituals, but as I’ve said, I’m not Catholic.>

Secap anuncia cursos (Secap announces courses) – The Servicio Ecuatoriano de Capacitación Profesional (SECAP – Ecuadorian Professional Training Service) is offering training courses in person, virtually and on-line. Courses include subjects such as client service, trainer training, identifying auto VIN numbers and tampering, wiring, Amaw soldering, accounting, electronics, Excel programming, cosmetology, and motorcycle mechanics. Register at www.secap.goblec, at their office, or on their Facebook page: SECAP Te Capacita Zona 6.

Nuevos equipos camineros para la provincia del Azuay (New road equipment for the province of Azuay) – <Your words for the day will be the names of the various sorts of heavy machinery. This is for all of you who pushed dirt around in the back yard with your Tonka toys.> The province is getting 24 pieces of machinery – its first purchase in 21 years. The additional equipment will add 5 more road crews to the existing 5 that attend to the 6,300 km. of roads in the province. The first delivery of 8 was yesterday and included 3 tractors and 5 motoniveladoras (motor graders). On 15/4, 4 retroexcavadoras y 2 cargadoras frontales (backhoes and front end loaders) will arrive. The last delivery of 7 rodillos lisos cabinados, 1 rodillo neumático, 1 escoba hidráulica y 1 minicargador (smooth roller with cab, 1 pneumatic roller, 1 hydraulic broom and 1 skid steer loader (also known as a Bobcat)) will arrive el 15/5.

Loja regresa a semáforo “rojo” debido a COVID-19 (Loja returns to a “red” light due to COVID-19) – Loja returned to red light status yesterday. Local doctors said the medical system is collapsed from patients in both public and private hospitals. The restrictions include reduced hours for alcohol sales and reduced hours for sports courts and public spaces. In-person religious celebrations are prohibited, and vehicular circulation is restricted according to license plate number. The safety measures will last until 25/4.

La Ley de Defensa de la Dolarización pasa el CAL (The Law for the Defense of Dollarization passes the CAL) – Pres. Moreno presented the Law for the Defense of Dollarization to the Asamblea Nacional for the 3d time, and it finally passed the Consejo de Administración Legislativa (Legislative Administration Council). The CAL will pass the law on to the Comisión de Régimen Económico (Economic Regime Commission) which has 30 days to analyze the law and submit it to the full assembly. The law would grant independence to the Banco Central which would remain part of the Executive branch, and protect dollarization. Its passage is also part of the agreement with the IMF

And that’s all for today so Hasta ? –


Editor’s note: Jeanne’s Periodico is a translated digest of news from the Cuenca daily newspaper El Mercurio. If details, such as event dates and times, do not appear in the translation, they did not appear in the newspaper. The text between the carrots, or guillemets (< … >), is Jeanne’s personal opinion and not part of the news translation.


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