Quito, Nov 23 (EFE).- The president-elect of Ecuador, Daniel Noboa and his vice president, Verónica Abad, were sworn in on Thursday in an investiture ceremony held at the National Assembly (Parliament), succeeding outgoing President Guillermo Lasso.
Noboa is the youngest president in Ecuador’s history at the age of 35.
He will face considerable challenges, such as an unprecedented and “worrying” crisis of insecurity and criminal violence, and an increasingly worrying economic situation, as he himself revealed in recent days.
Noboa took the oath before the President of the Assembly, Henry Kronfle, who later presented him with the presidential sash.
With his inauguration, the son of the banana magnate and five-time presidential candidate Álvaro Noboa begins a short term of only one and a half years.
Noboa will complete the 2021-2025 term that Lasso interrupted in May by using the “crossed death” constitutional mechanism, through which he dissolved the National Assembly with an opposition majority in order to hold new general elections.
Noboa won the second round, held on Oct. 15, against the Correísta Luisa González, after a complicated campaign in which Fernando Villavicencio, another promising candidate, was assassinated.
Among the first measures Noboa is expected to take is the declaration of a state of emergency in order to speed up the legislative process of two tax and electricity reform projects that he plans to present to Congress.
With these reforms, he intends to address the employment and electricity problems he inherited from his predecessor.
He will sign these decrees in principle on Thursday afternoon when he arrives at the Carondelet Presidential Palace, located in the historic center of Quito, to begin his first actions as head of state.
He is also expected to sign the appointments of some of his ministers, although the new president has already anticipated that the complete photo of his cabinet will not be available until Sunday.
So far, Noboa has not revealed who will be the ministers of the interior and national defense, the portfolios directly involved in quelling the crisis of insecurity, violence and organized crime.
Noboa’s inauguration was attended by authorities from other countries, such as the president of Colombia, Gustavo Petro, and the vice presidents of Brazil, Geraldo Alckmin, and Honduras, Renato Florentino Pineda, as well as former Colombian President Andrés Pastrana.
The event took place under extreme security measures around the National Assembly building, which was guarded from the early hours of the morning by a large police and military contingent, including snipers stationed on the roofs of the legislative building.
A fence was erected around the area and traffic was restricted to allow access only to those authorized to attend the ceremony.
Noboa arrived at the event accompanied by his wife, Lavinia Valbonesi, and their two children, while his mother, Dr. Annabella Azín, who had a political career as a deputy and congresswoman, was also in the room. EFE