President Lenin Moreno will hold permanent meetings with the ministers who preside over the six sectoral cabinets; Vice President Otto Sonnenholzner will oversee the work.
Executive Decree 660 published on February 5 defined the creation of a strategic cabinet and six sectorial ones, where 42 Executive entities are grouped by scope of action to coordinate the analysis and application of public policies.
With this structure, the Executive intends to organize the work of the ministries and secretariats, so that they have a common thread and the President supervises the progress of government decisions with greater efficiency.
The 6 sectoral cabinets are: Social, which will be chaired by the delegate of the President of the Republic to the Ecuadorian Institute of Social Security (IESS). The one of Natural Resources, Habitat and Infrastructure, directed by the Minister of Energy; Security, headed by the Minister of Defense; and the Economic, led by the Minister of Economy. And the cabinets were created: Governance and Policy Management, chaired by the head of the Secretariat of Politics; and of High Impact Projects, by the Particular Secretary of the Presidency.
The Governance does not have permanent members such as the sectoral ones, but entities will be convened according to the topic to be discussed. The same goes for the High Impact Projects, which will follow the execution of large works and the results of the management of public companies.
Interior Minister María Paula Romo, who heads the Policy Secretariat and chairs the new policy cabinet, said the new structure has been in operation since last year. He clarified that “we are not super ministers, we have the responsibility to coordinate; We were already working before the decree and now the order has only been formalized.”
Romo commented that this is a way of organizing the work of the ministries; “Just as a few months ago there were coordinating ministries by sector, today they have been entrusted to the ministers”. She said that the President of the Republic runs this apparatus, “he is the boss”, since he supervises the ministers. The advantage is that this organization articulates the members of the cabinet for objectives.”For example, socially or economically and, in the case of the Ministry of Government, with all the governors.”
The changes come as a result of the style that President Moreno implemented since he took office in 2017. His first decree was the suppression and merger of administrative and operational entities.
The six coordinating ministries were eliminated, the National Secretariat of Administration merged with the General Secretariat of the Presidency and eliminated the Ministry of Good Living, which did not contribute to the country and generated an annual expenditure of $ 3 million.
In April 2018, another stage of optimization came; the then national secretary of Planning and Development (Senplades), Andrés Mideros, said that 26 institutions would undergo mergers or closures; this involved reduction of personnel. Mauricio Maldonado, professor of Constitutional Law at the San Francisco University of Quito, said the Constitution does not limit the integration of the Executive Function.
That is why he agrees with this restructuring; “Quite has made us think that the President is an omnipotent being, rector of all powers and administration” He said that the imaginary has built the ideology of the personalization of power, hyperpresidentialism and populism. “We need in the future the effective deconcentration of power.” (I)