National Assembly members representing five political parties are asking President Lenin Moreno to withdraw his proposal for economic reform. The assembly members say they are concerned that the proposal, called the Economic Growth Law, is too large to be considered within the 30 days required by executive order and that it may be unconstitutional.
“This is a massive piece of legislation that requires careful study and debate which cannot be accomplished in 30 days,” says Elízabeth Cabezas of Alianza Pais. “There is also concern that the proposal violates the constitutional requirement that laws only deal with a single issue.”
Cabezas, who is a former Assembly president, complained that assembly members were not involved in the development of the proposal. “The legislation was written entirely by the executive branch with no input from the Assembly and we consider this a violation of trust between the branches of government.” She also complained the Assembly was provided no drafts of the proposal as it was being written.
Assembly President César Litardo said he sympathizes with Cabezas’ complaints but believes there is sufficient time to debate the 404 articles in the proposed law. “Yes, it is a great deal of work but we have time in the coming days to discuss the details,” he said. “The Assembly must understand that we are under emergency circumstances and are required to do what is necessary to see the process to conclusion.”
The proposed law was submitted to the Assembly on October 18. Under the executive order, all debate must conclude by Sunday.