The leadership of the indigenous Pachakutik party has expelled six members it accuses of failing to support party positions and advocating the resignation of Assembly President Guadalupe Llori, a member of Pachakutik.
Those expelled are Mario Ruiz Jácome, Mireya Pazmiño, Darwin Pereira, Peter Calo, Patricia Sánchez and Fernando Cabascango.
“Under difficult circumstances, Guadalupe Llori has done a very professional job of managing the Assembly and she deserves the support of her follow indigenous brothers and sisters,” Pachakutik party coordinator Rafael Lucero said following the dismissals. “She is the first indigenous person in the history of the Ecuadorian legislature to hold this position and we reject all attacks on her leadership.”
Without offering details, Lucero added that some of those expelled from the party were “involved in activities contrary to the interests of the indigenous people,” a reference to charges of involvement in illegal mining activities by two Pachakutik assembly members in the Buenos Aires gold mine in Imbabura Province.
The six party members dismissed have joined forces with the Correista Union of Hope and the Social Christian blocs in the Assembly demanding that Llori resign and that a commission be established to replace the legislative management council that sets the Assembly agenda.
Followng the expulsion of the six members, the leadership council of the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities (Conaie) blasted Pachakutik party leaders for joining the “neoliberal cabal of the Lasso government” and demanded their reinstatement.
In addition, Conaie on Saturday insisted that a council of the Pachakutik Plurinational Movement be convened to discuss the expulsions and to consider punishment of some Assembly members of Pachakutik.
“We reject the decision to remove Mireya Pazmiño, Peter Calo, Darwin Pereira, Fernando Cabascango and Patricia Sánchez, who are described as rebels,” the Conaie statement said. “We support the assembly members who, with their actions, have been consistent with the indigenous political project and have not surrendered to this neoliberal government.”
Former Conaie leadership council member Fabricio Diaz called the attack on Pachakutik leaders as “more of the same Iza bullshit,” referring to Conaie President Leonidas Iza. “This is Iza’s personal drama and it has no relation to the positions of most of Ecuador’s indigenous people. “Iza is a member of the Indo-American communist coalition which calls for the overthrow of elected governments. In his book [Estallido], he calls for violence against the government of Ecuador. He tried this in 2019 and look what happened? He does not have the support of the indigenous population and his advocacy for the resignation of Llori is proof of this.”
In addition to the Pachakutik “rebels,” UNES and Social Christians, some members of the Democratic Left are also calling for Llori’s resignation. Together, they appear to have the votes to replace her and the administrative council. Llori, who has so far refused to step down, says she will reconvine the Assembly on Tuesday.