Ecuadorian President, Guillermo Lasso on Thursday, announced a 60-day state of emergency across the country to douse anger trailing the assassination of Presidential candidate, Fernando Villavicencio.
Credible News reports that Villavicencio was killed as he left a campaign rally north of the capital, Quito 10 days before the first round of the Presidential election.
Lasso, in an address to the nation broadcasted on the channel of the Presidential Administration on YouTube said: “I am declaring a state of emergency for 60 days.
“From now on, the armed forces are mobilised throughout the country to guarantee the security of citizens, the tranquility of the country, and free and democratic elections”.
Ecuador’s National Electoral Council announced on Tuesday that early Presidential elections would be held on Aug. 20 after President Guillermo Lasso dissolved the National Assembly by decree last week and brought forward the vote scheduled for 2025.
Lasso’s decision to dissolve the opposition-led legislature came as lawmakers tried to impeach him for not stopping a deal between the state-owned oil transport company and a private tanker company, accusations he denies.
In disbanding the assembly, the President made first use of an option available to him under the constitution in conflicts with the legislative branch.
Elections had to be called within three months, for both the Assembly and Presidency, and the winners will serve out what would otherwise have been the remainder of the terms of those elected officials. If there is no outright winner a runoff vote will be held in October.
Lasso can choose to run in the Presidential election. In the meantime, he can rule by decree for up to six months.