Quito, Jan. 23. The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ecuador, Juan Carlos Holguin, said Monday that he does not know Ruben Cherres, mentioned as an alleged participant in an alleged corruption scheme in public companies in the electricity sector.
In a statement, the head of the Ecuadorian diplomacy refers to an audio published by La Posta, the digital media that earlier this month pointed out Danilo Carrera, brother-in-law of President Guillermo Lasso, as the alleged leader of this alleged scheme.
La Posta has disseminated this Monday on its Twitter account another audio with a conversation attributed to Cherres with Carrera, in which the former indicates to the latter that when he returns from France they will meet at his house with Holguín.
Once Carrera closes the call, in the audio -whose context and date have not been disclosed- Cherres apparently addresses a third party with whom he boasts about his alleged influence in the Government: "Brother, although it may seem a lie to you, I put ministers there".
PRONOUNCEMENT OF THE CHANCELLOR
"In relation to the audio published by the media La Posta, I emphatically affirm that I do not know Mr. Ruben Cherrez Faggioni", says Holguín in a message posted this Monday on his Twitter account.
He also emphasized that he has never had "a personal or professional relationship with Mr. Danilo Carrera and much less do I know or have visited his house".
Likewise, he assured that he has "never" met with Carrera, whom he has "seen him accompanying external delegations in two international trips".
"On one occasion I was part of a meeting for a chess issue, where the President of the Republic participated, together with the Russian ambassador, prior to the war", she added.
Finally, Holguín pointed out that, within the scope of his functions as Minister of Foreign Affairs and Human Mobility, he has never had any connection with the areas that have been mentioned in the publications of La Posta.
GOVERNMENT CORRUPTION RULED OUT
In an interview broadcasted as a national chain, Lasso ruled out on Sunday that corruption has seeped into his government and said that the fact that a former official has fallen "into the temptation of earning ill-gotten money" cannot be generalized.
"At most what exists is an alleged act of corruption by a former government official," he said in reference to the former president of the Empresa Coordinadora de Empresas Públicas (EMCO) Hernán Luque, of whom audios of alleged conversations between him and Cherres have also been released.
Last Friday, the Attorney General's Office led nine raids in the case known as "Encuentro" (Encounter), whose audios of alleged members of this apparent plot point to Carrera as an alleged "godfather".
These documents contain conversations attributed to Luque, Leonardo Cortázar and Cherres. The latter goes so far as to mention an alleged payment of $30,000 per month "to Danilo," according to the audio.
"HE DID NOT TRUST HIM".
Lasso commented that he asked for Luque's departure from the Government at the end of last year, "because he did not feel confidence".
"I did not trust him because I was not certain that he would have understood that this is a Government that fights against corruption, that we do not give a single space to corruption, that you cannot dialogue with corruption, that you cannot admit temptations", he indicated.
Last week, after hearing one of the audios revealed by La Posta, Lasso asked to locate Luque and Cherres "so that they can be brought to justice".
The governor confessed that he felt "indignation" when he listened to the audio, where he said he recognized Luque's voice.
"I felt indignation because he betrayed the trust that was deposited in him", he said, showing his hope to "very soon bring him by the scruff of the neck, wherever he is, so that he appears before the authorities and declares all that he must declare".
Carrera has rejected La Posta's allegations and has sued journalist Andersson Boscán for US$500,000 in compensation. EFE