The heads of the National Assembly caucuses met on the morning of this Wednesday, October 10 to analyze the cases of legislators Sofía Espín (Citizen Revolution) and Norma Vallejo (Alianza PAIS).
This was confirmed by Vice President Viviana Bonilla. She reported that in the first case it was decided that the multiparty commission that will investigate Espin’s visit to the protected witness of the Balda case, Diana F., will have three members. In the meeting the coordinator of the bench of Alianza PAIS, Ximena Peña, proposed that the commission be formed by Byron Valle, Espín’s partner in the bench of the Citizen Revolution; by Fernando Callejas, of CREO that promotes the investigation, and the third is Jimmy Candell, of the National Integration bench.
Last week, the Assembly decided to open a file against Espin after legislator Esteban Bernal (CREO) filed a formal complaint against her. This complaint is based on the denunciation of Diego Chimbo, lawyer of Diana F., who maintained that the visit to the social rehabilitation center of Chillogallo had the presumed objective of persuading her client to change the version and free of blame the former president Rafael Correa, who is investigated for the kidnapping of Fernando Balda.
Espin said she did not violate any rule or pressure the witness, so he submitted a request for the Council of the Legislature to reconsider the start of the file. However, this request did not pass and the investigation will continue.
What was accepted by the CAL was the request to receive legislators Espín and Bernal. It is expected that the representative of the bench of the Citizens’ Revolution will attend the CAL this afternoon. The conformation of the commission was agreed from the morning and although there was the complaint of Jaime Olivo, who was answered by the president of the Assembly, Elizabeth Cabezas, the majority confirmed the names, with 113 votes.
Now this commission will receive Espin and her complainant Bernal, who said he does not understand the decision, but will come to the call to present the arguments of his accusation. On this point, Bonilla stressed that one of the approaches made at the meeting of the block chiefs was that the third member had an independent profile or that she had voted neither for nor against in the session of last week, where it was decided to promote the investigation against Espín.
In the case of Norma Vallejo (Alianza PAIS), Assemblyman Fabricio Villamar (CREO) presented a denunciation against the assembly member to the Administrative Council of the Legislature. She is accused by four ex-officers of allegedly forcing them to give her a percentage of her salary for the payment of several items. According to Bonilla, after the complaint, the Assembly can initiate an investigation process. (I)