Government announces major equipment, arms upgrades for police; Cuenca holiday numbers top expectations; Census takers begin home visits

Nov 8, 2022 | 17 comments

Lunes, 7/11/2022

Hola, Todos –

Actividades –

Nada. <Actually, you should be resting from all of the activities over the holidays.>

Titular –

El primer duelo lo gana el Aucas (Aucas wins first match) – The Quito team beat Barcelona 1-0. <Any more details are for you to find out since I don’t translate sports except in very rare instances.>

Cuenca –

En feriado, cifra de visitas rebasó las expectativas (Visitor numbers exceeded expectations on holiday) – From the Cajas to the rural parishes, tourists were there during the holidays that ended ayer. A centro histórico restaurant owner said it was a good holiday, like the ones before the pandemic. She said she ran out of almuerzos.

The government announced it will invest $1.2 billion to buy equipment and weapons for the National Police. The plan also includes construction of new police facilities. (El Mercurio)

Natali Vázquez, the coordinator of the Department of Tourism and Culture for the Archdiocese of Cuenca said about 4,000 people visited the Santa Ana terrace in the New Cathedral as well as the “rooftop” which has been converted into a tourist attraction. Hoteliers also thought it was a good holiday. According to data from the Cámara de Turismo del Azuay, hotel occupancy was at 70% el 3/11, 95% el 4, and 90% el 5. Juan Pablo Vanegas, president of the Cámara de Turismo del Azuay, said occupancy was good, but didn’t compare with holidays before the pandemic when there were 100% occupancies. He thought full occupancy wasn’t reached due to the events which occurred in Guayaquil on the eve of the holiday. Until last week, the reservations that had been made led the hoteliers to think they would reach 100% occupancy, but after the violence on the coast, some tourists cancelled their reservations. The craftspeople at CIDAP saw a good number of people with the organizers estimating that 350,000 people went through the exhibit.

Nacional –

Vía web puede consultar la fecha en la que lo censarán (Check the date census workers will visit you on website) – From Monday until 18/12, the Censo Ecuador Presencial (In-person Ecuador Census) will be conducted. According to Roberto Castillo, director of the Instituto Nacional de Estadística y Censos (INEC), the visits are planned and you can go to the agency’s website to find out when it will be in your barrio. The census workers will be easily identifiable with a blue ball cap and vest with a Censo Ecuador 2022 logo and a nametag. The nametag has a Q code you can scan to verify the worker’s identity. <But if you’ve opened the door to scan the code, and it’s a fake worker, it’s probably too late to avoid getting robbed> Visits will be from 7-19:00 and if the resident isn’t home, the worker will leave a phone number to call to make an appointment.

Adjudican diésel premium (Premium diesel contract awarded) – Petroecuador awarded a contract to US firm Trafigura to import 2,520,000 barrels of diesel premium in 9 deliveries of 280,000 barrels by the end of the year. The fuel will supply the automotive sector and was awarded at a price differential of +$4.32/barrel.

De El Mercurio del domingo, 6/11/2022:

Arranca plan para fortalecer a Policía (Plan launched to strengthen police force) – Interior minister, Juan Zapata, accompanied Pres. Lasso on a visit to Santo Domingo de los Tsáchilas where there were 11 car bombings in the last few hours. Zapata announced the process by which $1.2 billion offered by the president will be used to reinforce the National Police to better prepare them for confronting organized crime which is better armed than the police. The money will be used until 2025 with the largest amount coming in a 1st phase next week when an Israeli commission will visit. The Government intends to buy as much weaponry as possible directly from Israel which can be done immediately in a State to State purchase. The rest of the equipment will be bought from legal arms dealers but through an emergency decree which will allow a speedy process.

By the end of 2022, the Government expects to conclude the $23 million contract for uniforms. It also bought 60,000 bulletproof vests for $35 million. Another $35 million went for basic equipment and vehicles. To date, 127 patrol vehicles and 300 motos for Guayaquil have been bought for $13 million. $159 million has been budgeted for the construction of 7 Unidades de Vigilancia Comunitaria (UVC) and to reinforce 100 Unidades de Policía Comunitaria (UPC). A new management model will be implemented in which 26 new intermediate police quarters will be created in the most dangerous zones in the country. <Let’s hope that none will need to be built in Cuenca.> This will cost $176 million.

Fausto Salinas, National Police commander, said another vital issue to combat crime is the acquisition of arms and equipment superior to those used by organized crime. The implementation of an Acquisition Plan for long arms, rifle type; armored vehicles; and 200 rounds of ammunition per cop is being considered. <I think maybe they may need to do more than that – kids in my neighborhood in the US had automatic weapons. And yes, it was a noisy neighborhood.>

And that’s all for today so hasta ? –

Jeanne




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