Reopening of schools delayed; U.S. loan tied to privatization, China exclusion; Candidates warned of missing debates; Cuenca adds 270 cases; Voto 2021

Jan 16, 2021 | 12 comments


Hello everyone –

Activities –

Otras cosas –

Titular – Piden restablecer línea 100 de buses (Request to restore bus line 100) – 1,000 residents of Baños and Ricaurte answered a survey given to bus and tranvía riders. They want the 100 buses back, and if that cannot be done, they want a new route which replaces the old 100 route, which was suspended when the Tram began operations. The new route would connect Ricaurte and Baños with stops at the UPS, public hospital, U. of Cuenca, Feria Libre, stadium and more. <Most of those aren’t particularly close to any Tranvía stops.>

Aplazan clases presenciales (In-person classes postponed) – The National COE postponed the return of teachers and students to classrooms due to the increase in Covid cases and total occupancy of ICU beds. The progressive return to classes was to have been by 4/2, but date has been changed to 19/2. The new date for professors and staff to return to classes is now 10/2. 204 schools had received approval to return to class, but that approval has been suspended until 9/2. 79 other schools including the colegio Alemán in Cuenca which had received approval, need to continue with online classes. In-person classes have also been suspended for 12 institutions of higher education including 3 in Cuenca which had opened up labs. These approvals will become valid again on 10/2.

The reopening of public and private schools has been delayed due to the increase in Covid-cases.

Entregan 5,000 pruebas (5,000 tests delivered) – Zone 6 of the Ministerio de Salud distributed 5,000 antigen tests to detect early cases of Covid. Between 8-14/1 there were 270 cases in Cuenca with 59 positive cases registering yesterday. The most cases registered in the week was 83 on 1/13.

Un nuevo crédito, atado a que bienes del Estado pasen a manos privados (A new credit, tied to State assets passing into private hands) – The U.S. International Development Finance Corporation is loaning Ecuador $3.5 billion for 8 years at 2.48% annual interest. This money can only be used for retiring existing high cost debt (debts to China would qualify) and to support the productive sector. The loan is also tied to assets of the Government passing to private hands. <I don’t understand this article which seems to imply that the loan could be repaid once the assets are transferred into private hands.> The Financial Times implied that the privatization would probably be telecommunications companies and petroleum with preference to US businesses with the exclusion of Chinese businesses. Ministro de Economía y Finanzas, Mauricio Pozo denied that and said that the bidding contests would be open to all countries.

Voto 2021 –

El CNE descalificará a los candidatos que se nieguen a debatir (The CNE will disqualify candidates who refuse to debate) – Presidential debates organized by the Cámara de Comercio de Guayaquil yesterday and today were attended by 13 of the 16 candidates. Yaku Pérez (Pachakutic), Andrés Arauz (Alianza UNES), and Isidro Romero (Avanza) did not participate. Starting tomorrow, the official debate organized by the CNE will be obligatory. Candidates who do not participate will be disqualified as a candidate and lose their political rights.

7 ejes tiene el plan de Democracia Sí (Democracia Sí’s plan has 7 axes <plural of axis and not the weapons dwarves carry>) – Democracia Sí, with its experienced professionals and one of the youngest candidates, is seeking to enter the Legislature with the objective of a national dialogue about the development of the country. The movement supports presidential candidate Gustavo Larrea. The candidates for the Asamblea Nacional are Tito Cabrera who identifies himself as “un ciudadano que se cansó de los mismos de siempre” (a citizen who got tired of the same old, same old), Kyra Martínez who is an entrepreneur, Marco Balcázar who is a judicial expert, Micaela Campoverde who represents the rural area, and Freddy Parra who is an “articulista” <I can’t find a translation that makes sense.> and ex-coordinator of the CNE.

The plan de trabajo is divided into 7 main axes including an economy in the service of the citizenry, sustainable development of production, a country of justice and transparency, reconstruction of peace for a safe country, recovery of health and social security, education for our reality and a new urban model. In the area of the economy, they propose laws that would permit boosting agricultural production, improve the entrance of foreign tourists, ecological and sustainable products, strengthen construcion, industry, commerce, crafts and innovation in public works through better roads and rail systems. They also want to strengthen the dollar and boost productive credit as a development strategy. They would improve transparency in contracting systems and Government administration and fight corruption with improvements in criminal law. Also their plan would have a migration policy that would help refugees; have improvements to the health system; education that would conserve traditions and encourage strategic production; support culture, technical development; and have better urban planning.
<These campaign promises are all starting to sound alike and more than can be reasonably accomplished.>

And that’s all for today so hasta ? –


Editor’s note: Jeanne’s Periodico is a translated digest of news from the Cuenca daily newspaper El Mercurio. If details, such as event dates and times, do not appear in the translation, they did not appear in the newspaper (please don’t ask her for them). The text between the carrots, or guillemets (< … >), is Jeanne’s personal opinion and not part of the news translation