Source: Ecuavisa – GISELLA ROJAS
According to the Ministry of Economy, the budget to combat insecurity in the country has increased. Experts have some questions.
During the Report to the Nation, President Guillermo Lassoleft for last the issue of insecurity that plagues the country, despite the fact that, according to several pollsters, it is the concern number one of Ecuadorians.
In his speech, Lasso stressed that the National Police has carried out more than two million control operations, that is, on average, 2,730 daily operations. He also referred to the increase in the number of police officers, in 2022, 1,624 were incorporated; “In June we will graduate 8,500 until December, 5,000 more police officers will join,” he said.
But, faced with an unprecedented context of violence in the country, how much has the fight against insecurity meant economically? Have the resources been sufficient? Here the details.
A slight increase compared to the Moreno government
The Government of Lasso, since 2021, has allocated until April of this year 9.762 million dollars. The amount, according to Finance, includes wagesequipment and the Annual Investment Plan of the 13 institutions that make up the security sector, including the Police, SNAI, Ministry of the Interior, Ministry of Defense, the Strategic Intelligence Center, among others.
In 2021, the year of transition between Lenin Moreno and Guillermo Lasso was destined 3.121 million dollars, but 58 million remained to be executed. In 2022, there was an increase in the budget, the most violent year for Ecuador, when the rate of deaths reached 25 per 100 thousand inhabitants, a figure that quintupled since 2018, the Government allocated 3,398 million dollars. However, in this period there was also unexecuted silver, around 192 million.
In summary, in 2022, the Government delivered 277 million more to the security budget than in 2021, while, in this 2023, an increase of 97 million is contemplated.
Have the resources been sufficient? For Fausto Ortíz, former Minister of Finance, In general terms, despite the fact that there are more needs to attend to in terms of security, the budget has grown slightly, “one would have expected that this item would have grown faster“. ortiz He says that this could be explained by the fact that the priority of the Lasso government has been to reduce the fiscal deficit.
In addition, it stands out that the most important expense corresponds to payroll, and not necessarily in investment for infrastructure and equipment. “Until last month if you looked at the investment plan for the execution of the Police and the Ministry of Defense It was one of the items that had the least execution,” he points out.