In an effort to "strengthen democracy," Ecuadorean President Lenin Moreno has launched a nationwide popular consultation, receiving some 450 proposals for government changes after inviting the public to voice their opinions on some of the country’s larger issues.
“During my term, I want a country where the presidency is led by the people,” Moreno said during a ceremony commemorating the ninth anniversary of the Constitution, emphasizing his wish to create “a government for all.”
Among the hundreds of suggestions which were sent in response to the president’s call, many pertained to the protection of Ecuador’s natural resources and environmental treasures from exploitation.
One of the proposals pushed for the elimination of Article 407 of the Constitution, which deals with the exploitation of forests, water sources and ancestral territories in protected areas.
Some participants recommended the resignation of Vice President Jorge Glas from government amid an ongoing corruption scandal involving the Odebrecht construction company. Others suggested the eradication of controversial communication laws and reelection of ministers.
Several right-wing opposition members who participated called for an end to “Correismo," a term used to refer to the governing ideology of former President Rafael Correa.
The deadline for receiving proposals came last Thursday, when the government collected 450 statements, according to the Secretary of Political Management's office.
From the suggestions, eight will be chosen, Moreno said, with at least two concerning Ecuador’s environment to be presented for consideration to the Constitutional Court.
Popular consultations have been a habitual practice in the Ecuadorean political system since 2008, when Correa took office.