People feel that the country has gotten out of the hands of the authorities. And many seek to leave. For analysts, the wave of violence between drug gangs is not a surprise.
The assassination of presidential candidate Fernando Villavicencio has plunged the Ecuadorian population into a ua whirlwind of mixed feelings: fear, anger, despair, helplessness.
The country has been declared in a state of exception and the military have been deployed in the streets. One might think that some tranquility has returned to Ecuador thanks to these measures.
However, many inhabitants do not feel it that waylike Alfredo Davalos: “I feel dismay, shock, anger. Anger that after Ecuador was considered an island of peacefor so many years, now the country has gotten out of hand”.
Sophie Beltran, a public official, blames the government above all, but considers that the public is not exempt from guilt.
“I am dispointed in the country; dispointed not only in the government in general, but in the decisions that we have made as citizens to hand over power to people who have not been able to take care of the citizenry”.
The scourge of GDOs
For analysts, the wave of violence between drug gangs, called here GDO (Organized Crime Groups)It’s not a surprise.
According to Colonel Mario Pazmino, former director of intelligence for the Ecuadorian army, it all started about 20 years ago when the narcos hit in Colombia they searched for a replacement country.
“It is a country where the borders they are highly permeable, corruption reigns and justice can be bought. A country where we have the opportunity to launder money. If, at best, It is also a dollarized country, so welcome. That is the description of the country Ecuador has become today.”
In this panorama we must include the Ecuadorians who put themselves in the hands of “coyotes” or human traffickers to seek better luck abroad.
Visa request to leave
Visa requests have skyrocketed: more than 800,000 in all embassies, according to analyst Gustavo Isch. Last year it was to look for a job, Now it is to flee from a reality that, according to Isch, “it has already reached the point of no return; I think we are living in a narco-democracy”.
Even some refugees like the Venezuelan Yasmina Hera, who arrived in Ecuador with her family six years ago, are beginning to think about going abroad to less chaotic countries.
“I would leave Ecuador if the opportunity presented itself thinking about the well-being of my two children, for their safety and their mental health. They want to leave, they are afraid. They tell me: Mom, I want to leave here, I don’t want to stay here, I have no future in Ecuador“.
Despite the martial declarations of the authorities, the attacks continue. Pedro Briones, leader of the political party of the Revolucion Ciudadana group, was shot dead this Monday in the city of San Mateo.
At the moment, there is nothing that can reassure a population angry with its government, unable to guarantee its security.
Ecuadorians vote in general elections next Sunday.