| QUITO, June 25
QUITO, June 25 Ecuador's ruling political
movement presented to the national assembly on Wednesday on a
controversial plan to end a two-term limit for the re-election
of the president, give new powers to the military and increase
oversight of the country's media.
The opposition has fiercely criticized the proposed package
of at least 17 reforms to the 2008 constitution with possibly
more to follow, which the ruling Alianza Pais (AP) presented to
the national assembly where it has a majority.
"All of us AP assembly members have decided to present this
initiative," Marcela Aguinaga, the assembly's vice-president
The proposals will require approval by the Constitutional
Court before legislators can begin to discuss the proposals.
The Alianza Pais' proposal aims to enable President Rafael
Correa to seek re-election in 2017 when his second five-year
mandate expires, and give him more time to implement his broadly
supported socialist program.
Correa has brushed off criticism that he is seeking to cling
to power, saying "the alternating of power is determined by the
people at the ballot box" and he has not yet confirmed whether
he plans to run in the next election.
The opposition has also criticized the government for ruling
out the possibility of putting the reforms to a referendum.
Among the other proposed changes would be an additional role
for the military alongside the police force in the provision of
internal security together with their regular role of providing
defense and protecting the country's sovereignty.
The amendments would also increase government oversight of
the media and reduce the minimum age to stand for election to
the presidency to 30 from 35 at present.
(Writing by Peter Murphy; Editing by Richard Chang)