The Ecuadorian presidential candidate who was fatally shot at a political rally was unafraid to tackle legal networks and a political elite he accused of corruption
ByThe Related Press
August 10, 2023, 12:02 PM
QUITO, Ecuador — The Ecuadorian presidential candidate who was fatally shot at a political rally was unafraid to tackle legal networks and a political elite he accused of corruption by the hands of organized crime.
Fernando Villavicencio, who was a journalist earlier than coming into politics, waged a yearslong battle in opposition to the forces that he noticed remodeling Ecuador, together with crime that had seeped into practically each side of life, from road theft to cocaine trafficking and corrupt authorities contracting.
Among the many 59-year-old’s largest scoops as a journalist was reporting on a trove of paperwork that pointed to inflated costs, shoddy workmanship and indulgent kickbacks that had been concerned in among the nation’s largest infrastructure initiatives, together with some constructed by Brazilian building large Odebrecht. The proof he uncovered was later used to assist convict former Vice President Jorge Glas on bribery costs.
Villavicencio additionally shined a lightweight on obscure offers by which former President Rafael Correa’s leftist authorities took billions in loans from state banks in China in trade for oil shipments.
The oil offers, harshly criticized by Villavicencio, have since been restructured by President Guillermo Lasso to offer the OPEC nation extra monetary respiratory room at a time when the dollarized economic system has been shedding competitiveness to its neighbors, all of which have versatile trade charges which have helped buoy exports.
For his fearless reporting, Villavicencio paid a excessive value. He fled at the least as soon as into exile in Peru in 2017. Upon his return house, he might be seen shuttling across the capital, Quito, with armed bodyguards.