I WANT A UNITED COUNTRY WITHOUT CLASS WAR
In a press conference called to present the PRIAN candidates for young people, Álvaro Noboa placed emphasis on the need for the class war between the rich and the poor, for the fight between ideologies, or between religion to cease.
“What Ecuador is calling for today is employment, it’s getting out of poverty, it’s the problem of crime, it’s the problem of water provision, and that’s what I am going to work for, together with all the parties, even the 35, to resolve them under my government.
Noboa referred to the political persecution that Carlos Marx has brought against him:
“I think Mr. Carlos Marx has a personal hatred against me. He has persecuted me, he has sequestered my goods, he has imposed sanctions against my leaving the country. If he continues in that way, he’s going to have dozens of thousands of unemployed people who worked for Grupo Noboa.”
If Ecuador needs more jobs, said Noboa, destroying the most important groups will lead to a monstrous recession.
Álvaro Noboa: May God be with us, Ecuadorians, I have offered the youth of Ecuador the possibility of putting forward young Assembly Members and I want to show you today a group of young PRIAN Assembly Members who are going to defend the interests of young people, who understand better the problems of the young. Unemployment is among the biggest existing problems because there are many young university students who upon graduating don’t have jobs, and many young people who want to enter university – which I wish would be free and without entrance exam – but owing to the entrance exams and the costs, can’t go to university.
Besides those present, there are young Assembly Members from all the provinces in Ecuador. In Quito, for example, there is also Stéfany Tejada who is a known figure on television; we have a group of young people in Cañar; we have a group of young people in Carchi; or that is to say that the major part of our list is made up of young people, because their challengers are of the age of their grandparents. Because, well, we think that, given that 60% of the Ecuadorian population are young people, they are going to have great national support. That is what I wanted to say to the Ecuadorians. There is Giselle Rosado, who heads the list for Los Ríos; there is Carlos José Matamoros who heads Guayas District 1. I see that they have huge acceptance, they are known all over the place, they are recognized, they are cheered on, and the youth join our convoys.
Long live the young people! Long live Ecuador!
Press: Counselor Noboa, you are focused on the young electorate, but nevertheless, it appears that the greatest number of voters are people between 21 and 65 years old. What, do you believe, is the percentage that you could reach with known figures, yes, but absolutely young. What is conceded to the young people, and what is denied them in this road?
Álvaro Noboa: 60% are between 16 and 35 years old. Therefore, the majority of those present, I see, are in that age range, they are between 18 and 30 years old. What I offer the young people is to attend to their problems, which are different from the problems of people 60, 70, and 80 years old, who will also be attended to by those same young people. They will take charge of attending to their grandparents.
Press: Counselor Noboa, to reach the second round, there is the possibility that the percentage, the margin, becomes, as one might say, of the two candidates, it would be slim enough for the President, seeing that already in that moment of crossing to a second round, the opposition would form one united bloc. What is the proposal for the opposition before the next candidate, who in that case, according to the polls, would Rafael Correa also be in the second round? What would you propose as a united bloc of opposition?
Álvaro Noboa: I have said it before, and I’ll say it now: I want a united country. I don’t want a country divided like it is now by class warfare, by a fight between the rich and the poor, by an ideological struggle, by racial struggles, by religious struggles. I am going to invite Economist Rafael Correa to also form part of our government, he could easily support us in the social arena, where it’s gone well for him. I am in agreement with him about the $50 voucher. I am in agreement with him about the healthcare program. I am in agreement with him about the manner in which he has managed social security.
Press: Would you appoint him as Minister?
Álvaro Noboa: As President, I don’t think that he would accept to be a Minister, but yes, our Ambassador to Belgium, or he could be a great consultant for us or what they call in English, “Ambassador at Large”, a plenipotentiary ambassador who goes throughout the world representing Ecuador and, above all, inviting people, in the name of Álvaro Noboa, the world over to come to Ecuador and to this united Ecuador. I would also invite Mr. Alberto Acosta to form part of our government, and Mr. Guillermo Lasso, and Mr. Lucio Gutiérrez, or representatives of his party, because, I repeat, we need for there to be union in Ecuador and what I hope I will achieve is that there be investment and employment in Ecuador. In that, it’s not gone well for Economist Correa. It’s gone well for him in many areas, and in that sense I congratulate him, but it has also not gone well for him in issues like employment, security and the high cost of living. In the street they say to me, “no more taxes, Counselor” because with the taxes that the businessman or the manufacturer passes on to the cost of the product, and although Ecuadorians are earning more, it still isn’t enough.
Press: One sees young people among your candidates, some of them known from television because of the programs they host. In the Assembly, as everybody knows, they are going to create laws. Are they prepared for that, o not?
Álvaro Noboa: I want to let you know that Giselle, who is very young, much younger than myself, has already been an Assembly Member. At what age were you Assembly Member?
Giselle Rosado: At 24 years old.
Álvaro Noboa: At 24 she was an Assembly Member and did a great job. Don’t take merit away from the young people. They can develop very good works. I have a son who is 25 who is the Director of a group of companies, and does great work. And Carlos José Matamoros, after being an Assembly Members, could be the next mayor of Guayaquil.
Press: Merit is not being taken away, Counselor, but rather they are going to make laws that are the fundamental basis for the country in the future.
Álvaro Noboa: But the political dinosaurs, as I call the forever politicians that have ruined this country over the past 18 years: how has their knowledge served them?
Press: What will the organization of the PRIAN be like in regards to the controls that there will be in the electoral campaign from the National Electoral Counsel?
Álvaro Noboa: We are thinking of uniting with all the parties to make a parallel electoral control. Lucio Gutiérrez has invited [people] to do this and it seems like a good idea to me; the very same Guillermo Lasso, the very same Álvaro Noboa, and any other candidate who wants to join; this electoral control would be very good.
Press: Counselor, the OEA is being replaced by observers from UNASURE. We now about the obvious reason for friendship that exists between the President of the Republic with a group form UNASUR, with a group of countries from the same ideological front. Does that mean that there is an absolute lack of confidence in the process owing to some observers will share the ideological line of the current government?
Álvaro Noboa: I hope that Economist Rafael Correa is not making a mockery of us and that, really, he as well, if it is possible, will hold himself to the rules of all the candidates so that there is democracy. Because if not, it would be a mockery, and I have a good opinion of Economist Correa in many aspects. I don’t know him personally, I’ve never sat down to have a conversation with him, but I have seen that he has a leadership, that he is successful in many areas, but unfortunately the key, what Ecuador is calling for today, is employment, it’s getting out of poverty, it’s the problem of crime, it’s the problem of water provision, and that’s what I am going to work for, together with all the parties, even the 35, to resolve them under my government.
Press: You have said that wherever you go, the people ask for a reduction in taxes. The President of the Republic asserts that this is one of his achievements, with Carlos Marx Carrasco at the forefront. The question is, which taxes yes and which taxes no, in regards to fiscal obligations. Does it seem to frighten you that the national budget would not be complete? Does it concern the future President where the money is going to come from to fulfill the country’s international commitments? How are you going to take that?
Álvaro Noboa: I believe that one person is Carlos Marx and another person is Economist Rafael Correa. I think Mr. Carlos Marx has a personal hatred against me. He has persecuted me, he has sequestered my goods, he has imposed sanctions against my leaving the country. If he continues in that way, he’s going to have dozens of thousands of unemployed people who worked for Grupo Noboa. So I think that at some point Economist Correa is going to say to Economist Carlos Marx Carrasco, “Enough already, it’s gotten out of your hands, this smells of political persecution”. You can’t go around destroying the 20 or 10 groups who generate the most employment in the country. Because then, yes, who is going to employ them? If right now there is unemployment, imagine the day that they destroy the big groups who are the major employers? That would lead to a monstrous recession.