One of the first actions proposed by the Council of Citizen Participation and Transitory Social Control (Cpccs-t) was to investigate nine works considered emblematic by the previous regime of Rafael Correa.
Three of these cases were reported in the Office of the Prosecutor and it is foreseen to present four more until May 13, when its functions end. Two others still do not go to the Cpccs-t Plenary, so it could take longer to reach the Prosecutor’s Office: the issue of the Esmeraldas Refinery, which is close to approval, and another on Public Debt that is still under investigation.
The plenary resolution of April 4, 2018 established as priority investigations the cases: Pacific Refinery, Toachi-Pilatón Hydroelectric Project, Esmeraldas Refinery, Pascuales-Cuenca Poliducto, Manduriacu Hydroelectric Plant (Caminosca Case), and Reconstruction of Manabí, Management of the Public debt, construction of Millennium schools and construction of public hospitals.
Marcela Estrella, Secretary of Transparency and Fight against Corruption of the Cpccs-t, said that these cases were taken as a priority because there were investigations or complaints about alleged corruption. The process is as follows: the Cpccs-t conducts an investigation that ends with a report presented to the Plenary. That body approves it and decides the legal actions to follow.
Investigating corruption and being a party to the complaints are duties established in Article 208 of the Constitution. Section 6 states that it must “act as a procedural party in the cases that are instituted as a result of its investigations”. So far, Manduriacu, Refinería del Pacífico, Reconstruction of Manabí, Escuelas del Milenio, Toachi Pilatón, Pascuales-Cuenca and Public Hospitals have approved reports.
Three cases have become complaints in the Office of the Prosecutor: Manduriacu, Refinería del Pacífico and Reconstrucción de Manabí. The definitive Cpccs, if required by the Office of the Prosecutor, must continue with the pertinent proceedings. Although, legally, it is their duty and obligation, Estrella points out that she expects that the new directors will also have the political will to continue the investigations. Is it possible for the new Cpccs to review these complaints?
Ramiro García, dean of the Faculty of Jurisprudence of the Central University of Ecuador, says no. For this expert, at the time of the presentation of the complaints, all the evidence had to be provided. “Since then, everything is on the court of the Prosecutor’s Office,” he said. David Ochoa, expert in Constitutional Law, says that the new Cpccs could be the subject of a political trial, in case of not fulfilling its constitutional duty. In addition, it says that it is exposed to be subject to sanctions by the Comptroller General of the State. Virgilio Hernández, leader of Citizen’s Revolution Social Commitment, related to the correísmo, says that Julio César Trujillo has a persecutory zeal, reason why the new Council will have to review the acted in those cases.
Seven cases have a report approved by the cpccs-t Manduriacu
The report states that elements were found to presume the existence of a criminal network, dedicated to the abuse of public resources and influence peddling.
It was requested to link the former president Rafael Correa in the investigation, of course abuse of public resources and favor the realization of business with the State.
Reconstruction Suppositions embezzlement, illicit enrichment and influence peddling for contracts in the reconstruction of Manabí, after the earthquake of 2016.
The report indicates delays in the execution of the project. This, according to the Cpccs-t, would generate loss of profits (loss to the State) of USD 3.6 million per month. Pascuales-Cuenca Due to supposedly poorly executed administrative and accounting processes, the economic, financial and legal systems of the Ecuadorian State would have been violated.
The Cpccs-t detected emergency decrees for the educational sector that are not justified. The report says that this would cause diversion of funds and increase in costs.
They indicate to the ex-president Rafael Correa by the supposed crime of organized delinquency when emitting the Decree that allowed irregular direct hirings. (I)