President Lenin Moreno says Ecuador will stand beside referendum election results to reorganize the Council for Citizen Participation and Social Control (CPCCS). On Tuesday, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, part of the Organization of American States (OAS), called on Ecuador to suspend efforts to replace the current members of CPCCS as a result of question three in the February 4 election.
By a 63 to 37 percent margin, voters approved the reorganization of CPCCS.
In a conversation to OAS Secretary General Luis Almagro, Moreno said Ecuador will not back down on the question. “I made it clear to the secretary general that although we are respectful of legitimate international organizations, we will enforce the popular mandate expressed at the ballot box,” the president said on his Twitter account.
Almagro responded by congratulating Moreno on his “electoral triumph” in the referendum, adding that the OAS human rights commission works in an advisory capacity to support democracy in the Americas.
The human rights commission recommendation not to follow through on provisions of question three was based on complaints by several members of the CPCCS.
The CPCCS, created by Ecuador’s 2008 constitution, is based on a Venezuelan council of the same name intended to increase public participation in the governance process. It is responsible for appointing officials, such as the Attorney General, the Comptroller General, as well as members of the National Electoral Council members, the Human Rights Ombudsman, and the judicial oversight board.
Critics have claimed that the council, as it was constituted in Ecuador, served as an extension of executive power during the presidency of Rafael Correa.
Following up on Moreno’s comments, the foreign ministry objected to the OAS’s interference in the “sovereign affairs of Ecuador.” In a statement the ministry said it, “rejects the human rights commission’s request as incomprehensible, unethical and contrary to the its legal proceedings.” It continued, that Ecuador is not under obligation to comply with the commission’s request.