The Constitutional Court approved the referendum’s tricky question, which it wisely rejected ten years ago.

Activists have a goal and it is their right to present it in the way that suits them best. But instead of showing solidarity, the Constitutional Court must reformulate the issue in order to balance it, to warn the voters about the consequences of the decision.

About $16.4 billion in less revenue would hit the state treasury if the case for leaving crude oil on ITT soil prevails, officials say, while the area’s indigenous population supports oil extraction

Activists ask the question in a way that prompts an affirmative answer: “Do you agree with the Ecuadorian government keeping ITT crude oil, known as Block 43, underground indefinitely?”

The question should have read “Do you agree with the closure of oil production wells on the ITT and the dismantling of the infrastructure that was put in place for this?”

Due to the tricky nature of the question, please vote against it!

The ITT field is in operation, producing 55 thousand barrels per day. The economy is fed by the currencies it creates. That means stopping production, to the extent that the export of crude oil will be worth a little more than the import of fuel. A decline in exports would require an economic contraction for imports to fall in the same way. Formal and informal businesses will lose sales, clients of professionals and craftsmen will pay less.

The Treasury depends on the $1,200 million that ITT generates annually (average). A reduction in tax revenues would be unsustainable for a treasury with excessive current expenditures, partly because the Constitutional Court itself ordered a significant increase in education salaries without accompanying it with funding.

In addition to income, the state loses all investments in oil extraction and must invest in removing the infrastructure from its foundations and restoring the 70 affected hectares to their original state.

(…) the export of crude oil will be worth a little more than the import of fuel.

This revenue could be replaced by abolishing the petrol subsidy or raising the VAT by three points.

Because of the loss of living standards that entails the loss of oil production, No!

Radical environmentalists who oppose oil also oppose aquaculture because it affects the coastal ecosystem and banana and sugarcane plantations, among others, because these are monocultures that change ecological diversity. With the precedent of the Court that through public consultation an industry can be dismantled, tomorrow I can ask the question “Do you agree that the Ecuadorian government maintains mangrove swamps and beach areas protected from human beings?” And if the “yes” of Amazon romanticism (the ITT case) is followed by the “yes” of coastal romanticism, the state would have to dismantle all shrimp farms. We must vote against this disastrous precedent.

Complex questions that require study to be answered should not be the subject of consultation. It’s even worse to unite them in general elections, because voters already have enough problems to discern who to vote for president and parliament members. In the sectional elections, in order to express their dissatisfaction with the Government, despite the cry for greater security, the electorate voted against extradition and everything else. Issues of great complexity should not be subject to consultation, and this should not end in a general election. Therefore, we must vote No! (OR)