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Right-wing Ecuadorian presidential candidate Fernando Villavicencio was assassinated on Wednesday after being shot multiple times after leaving a political rally.
Villavicencio’s family confirmed his death, according to Bloomberg News. He was killed at a political event located at a school in Ecuador’s capital city of Quito.
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Villavicencio, a journalist, was an opponent of former leftist President Rafael Correa and was sentenced to 18 months in prison back in 2014 for allegedly slandering Correa, according to a report from Bloomberg’s Latin America news division. He remained a fugitive for three years and was granted political asylum in Peru where he stayed until 2017.
After returning the country, he went to Ecuador’s attorney general and accused the government of misusing public resources in the “commercialization of crude oil between Ecuador and private company Petrochina,” which he estimated resulted in billions of dollars in loss for the country.
The report said that his campaign’s theme was building safety in the country by focusing on five pillars: citizen, food, economic, environmental, and health.
“In the 2021 elections, he was elected a national congress member for the so-called Honesty Alliance, and in September 2022 he was the victim of an attack at his residence,” the report added. “As an investigative journalist, he has also contributed with information to denounce cases of corruption in oil, mining, electricity, telecommunications and criminal structures.”