Ecuador’s National Assembly on Saturday evening elected Lawmaker Guadalupe Llori, a representative of the Pachakutik indigenous political party, as its president for the next two years.
Llori won the National Assembly presidency with 71 votes in the 137-seat chamber, with the support of allies of conservative President-elect Guillermo Lasso.
Llori previously served as a local official in Orellana province in the Amazon region and was jailed during former President Rafael Correa’s government on terrorism and sabotage charges after organizing protests against oil companies.
Llori was later granted amnesty and calls the charges politically motivated.
The alliance between Pachakutik and Lasso’s CREO party effectively sidelined the left-wing UNES party. UNES won the most seats in the congress in elections earlier this year but fell short of an outright majority.
Lasso, a former banker, will take office in the oil-producing South American country on May 24 after beating out UNES candidate Andres Arauz, a Correa protege, in an April runoff. Pachakutik candidate Yaku Perez placed third in a first-round vote in February.
Indigenous activists in Ecuador protested heavily against current market-friendly President Lenin Moreno’s austerity policies, but also had major disagreements with Correa, who they accused of prioritizing oil production over the environment and indigenous communities.
Lasso has pledged to revamp crude production contracts to attract more investment to the sector but has also promised to review the need for more drilling in the environmentally sensitive Amazon region.