Noboa widens lead over González in new poll; Crime forces a return to online classes in Durán, Guayaquil; Most crime drops in Quito but murders increase
According to its latest poll, Atrevia Public Research shows that Daniel Noboa has increased his lead over Luisa González by 1.8% in Ecuador’s presidential race. In a direct vote, Noboa polls 55.14% to González’s 44.86%, a difference of 10.3%. Counting null and undecided responses, Noboa leads 43% to 35.1%.
According to Álvaro Marchante, Atrevia director of public affairs, the majority of voters who supported candidates that did not make the runoff, are supporting Noboa. Even among undecided voters, Noboa holds the edge. “Of the 12.3% of voters who say they have not made a final decision, the majority say they are inclined to vote for Noboa and but need more information,” he said, adding that most poll respondents say they have read both candidates’ proposals.
Marchante believes the October 1 presidential debate could have a major impact on election results. “Almost 70% of voters watched the first debate and most said it influenced their vote,” he says. “Many said that Noboa’s debate performance earned their vote.”
Before the first debate, polls showed Noboa with 4% to 8% support. In the election, he received 24%, enough to put him in the runoff with González.
Marchante says that crime and violence are the biggest issues for voters but said that opinions about former president Rafael Correa, of González’s Citizens Revolution movement, also play a role in voter decision. “Correa is a rallying figure for many voters but is a turn-off for others,” he said.
The Atrevia poll results are based on a sample of 5,032 voters in all 24 provinces. Its margin of error is 1.38%.
Crime forces a return on online classes in Durán and Guayaquil
More than 31,000 students in Durán and 7,000 in Guayaquil will attend classes virtually due to an increase of crime in the areas where their schools are located. In Durán, 34 schools have been ordered closed by the Ministry of Education while six have closed in Guayaquil. The closures took effect Tuesday.
“As a result of the high level of insecurity near these schools, we are forced to temporarily end face-to-face classes,” the Ministry said Monday. “We are working with the National Police to restore order in these neighborhoods so we can reopen the schools as soon as possible.”
The closures follow complaints by parents who say their children are not safe traveling to and from school or in the classroom. Since the first of year, one student has been killed and four others injured by gunfire from gang warfare in or near schools.
Most crime drops in Quito but murders increase
Since the beginning of the year, crime in most categories has fallen in Quito but murders have increased sharply. “There has been an impressive 17% reduction in overall crime but, because of the murders, citizens are more fearful than ever,” says Municipal Security Director Carolina Andrade.
According to the National Police, 193 murders have been committed in the city through September 18 of 2023 compared to 124 in the same period last year.
“This is the statistic that residents are most alarmed by,” says Andrade, who announced a new “Citizen Security” plan Monday. “People are very worried about the spread of gang violence from the coast and the murder rate appears to support that fear,” she says. “It is important that the public know that robberies and personal assaults have dropped in the first seven months of the year, and these are the crimes that affect the most people.”
According to Andrade, the Citizen Security plan will bring together neighborhood organizations and civic groups to develop anti-crime strategies for various sectors of the city. “Ultimately, the goal is to promote an atmosphere of peace and coexistence through citizen involvement,” she says.