Guillermo Lasso dissolves Congress in Ecuador: what is cross-death

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The president of Ecuador, William Lasso, threatened with dismissal, he decreed on Wednesday the dissolution of Congress, which implies holding early elections. This legal procedure is called “cross death”. What is it about?

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Cross-death is a constitutional mechanism by which the president can trigger the dissolution of the National Assembly.

This constitutional attribution does not require the approval of another state body and bears the name of cross death because the president, at the close of Congress, must call elections and thus end his presidency. Both sides eventually lose their mandate.

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This is the first time that a representative applies the so-called “cross death”, which can be exercised only once in the first three years of the mandate.

When can it be used?

The decision is based on article 148 of the constitution, which gives the president the power to dissolve the Legislature only once, for three reasons: when the Assembly has assumed functions that do not correspond to it, due to an obstacle to the national development plan or serious political crisis and internal turmoil.

Legal analyst Ramiro Aguilar told the AP that “this is a fully constitutional mechanismAnd that the provision helps to unblock the dispute between the government and the Assembly.

The unpopular right-wing president is accused by the legislative opposition of alleged corruption in oil transport contracts. And this week he was facing the final stage of an impeachment trial, which would culminate in a vote this weekend, with enough votes to remove him.

Lasso went to the scene on Tuesday and said there is no evidence against him.

What’s next?

In a country mired in violence related to drug trafficking and popular discontent over the cost of living, Lasso has to call elections.

In fact, he has already asked the National Electoral Council (CNE) to convene a early general elections.

The Constitution establishes that within the maximum term of seven days from the publication in the Official Gazette of the dissolution decree, the electoral body will call the legislative and presidential elections for complete the current four-year period.

“It is a democratic decision not only because it is constitutional, but because it gives back to the Ecuadorian people the possibility of deciding,” Lasso said on national television.

Until the establishment of the new National Assembly, Lasso will be able to govern issue decree-laws of economic urgencybut subject to the favorable opinion of the Constitutional Court.

It is the first time that a president has applied the “cross death”, which can be exercised only once during the first three years of his mandate.

Parliament tried last June to remove Lasso amid violent indigenous protests against the high cost of living, but failed to get 12 votes to remove him from power.

AFP and AP

Source: Clarin

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