FROM THE EDITORS: Ecuador is again in turmoil. The only indigenous party, Plurinational Unity Movement Pachakutik (MUPP) List 18, born from popular resistance in the 1990s, and most national indigenous organizations have publicly called people to void their vote, “Vote Null,” in the next round of presidential elections set for April 11. (Voting is compulsory in Ecuador.) As we reported back in February, there were really strong allegations of fraud as with 99.42% of the votes counted, the electronic results began to change suddenly—a statistical impossibility—against environmentalist indigenous candidate Yaku Perez, who was for a brief couple hours declared in second place by the National Electoral Council (CNE). Perez was denied a request to recount of 20 thousand ballots in question; CNE provided results for only 28 ballots that, indeed, showed discrepancies. This is not the first time that candidates have accused CNE of fraud. Environmental collective Yasunidos presented in 2018 evidence of fraud by the CNE that prevented a national referendum to stop oil exploitation in Yasuni National Park. Conservative candidate Guillermo Lasso called fraud in 2017, after exit polls had called him the winner of the presidential elections, and presented a complaint before the Organization of American States (OES). Below we reproduce a translation of MUPP’s decision to call people to void their vote or essentially boycott the elections.
Resolution of the National Political Council
The National Political Council of the Plurinational Unity Movement Pachakutik (MUPP) List 18, in the meeting at the national headquarters, this Tuesday, March 23, with the participation of the National Coordinator, Provincial Coordinators, Executive Committee, Head of the Branch, Assembly members. Joined by fraternal organizations CONAIE, ECUARUNARI, CONAICE, and the FETMYP, after a debate and analysis under the principles Ama Llulla, Ama Shuwa, Ama Killa, and Ama Awka (don’t be idle, don’t be a thief, don’t be lazy, and don’t be disloyal); resolves under the Organic Regime of the MUPP the following:
1. We thank more than the two million citizens who trusted and believed in the political project “Minka for life” and in our colleague Yaku Pérez, presidential candidate. He is the true representative of the people, and we ratify to be the third alternative [tercera vía] of the Left: Communal, Honest, Ecological, Humanist, anti-extractivist, anti-patriarchal, and anti-colonial and aware that our path is resistance for the emancipation of the peoples.
2. We ratify our struggle and permanent resistance for the exercise of individual and communal rights, transparency, and honesty that go with the principles of the MUPP as a historical project and the construction of the Plurinational State and an intercultural society.
3. The MUPP as the first political force will guarantee the transparency and unity of the bench of the 27 Assembly members and Andean Parliamentarian, maintaining coherence and conviction with the political project through a permanent vigil and praxis of the legislative agenda based on the 4Es: “Ecology, Economy, Education, Ethics.” Consequently, we will legislate and audit with the participation of social organizations and citizens under the principles of honesty, transparency, and ethics.
4. To obtain the space [for agency] and commissions in the National Assembly, our colleague Rafael Lucero, Head Legislator in absolute and permanent coordination with the National Coordination of the MUPP, to promote dialogue with other political sectors in the country, with legitimate rights to access these dignitaries without giving up the ideological political principles of the MUPP, and in consultation with the party’s Assembly members. All these dialogues will begin on April 12 of this year.
5. The MUPP from this date will undertake the national campaign of adhesion and strengthening of the provincial, cantonal and parochial structures.
6. We reject the systematic fraud of the 2021 elections. The MUPP Assembly members to take office will bring legal political action against the members of the National Electoral Council CNE and the Contentious Electoral Tribunal TCE for being the authors and responsible for the Electoral Fraud during the 2021 elections.
7. The MUPP summons its militancy and the people of Ecuador who placed trust in our political project of the Minka for Life to vote against the corrupt electoral system and the candidates who do not represent us, who have no ethical authority and do not heed to our historical demands. [We ask to mark your] “Vote Null” as punishment for the institutionalized corruption and electoral fraud, knowing that we are the third alternative and the only option for the excluded sectors of the Ecuadorian society.
8. Neither the members of the MUPP nor their family members may hold freely removable public office appointments during the government of the candidate who wins the presidential elections; if they do not comply with this democratic resolution, they will be automatically expelled from the Movement.
9. At the next National Political Council, the public signing of the “Charter of Honesty, Transparency and Ethics” will be held by the 54 Assembly members, principals and alternates, as well as the Andean Parliamentarian and her alternate.
City of Quito on March 23, 2021
By the National Political Council
Marlon Santi Gualinga
Movement of Plurinational Unity Pachakutik List 18