7.
He maintained that on December 2, 1998, he was appointed by the Congress of the Republic
as a Member of the Supreme Electoral Tribunal of Ecuador for the period 1998-2003, having subsequently been
legitimately re-elected to serve in the position for the period 2003-2007.
8.
He indicated that both his election and his re-election were made possible by the
constitutional reform of 1997, as a result of a popular referendum held on May 25, 1997. He mentioned that
when appointed as a member, the National Congress assessed the constitutional norms, legal and regulatory
provisions and proceeded with an election in accordance with the Ecuadorian legal framework in force at the
time of the events, in particular, the Organic Law of Elections of the Republic of Ecuador and its General
Regulations.
9.
He stated that on November 25, 2004, the National Congress, by means of Resolution No. R25-160, declared that the members of the Constitutional Court and the Supreme Electoral Tribunal were
appointed illegally, in breach of Article 209 of the Constitution, specifically with regard to the manner of voting,
and ordered his removal and the appointment of other members according to the Political Constitution of the
Republic and the law, from among the candidates nominated at the time by the National Congress. He stressed
that one of the articles of the decision stipulated that it would enter into force immediately, without prejudice
to its publication in the Official Registry. The petitioner stated that this was prima facie unconstitutional.
10.
He indicated that a few days later the National Congress dismissed the justices of the Supreme
Court of Justice, restricting the independence and impartiality of the administration of justice in the Republic
of Ecuador.
11.
He said that the aforementioned resolution was a breach of the Constitution, as it failed to take
into account the constitutional articles regulating the appointment and the duration of the position. He also
alleged that the resolution lacks legal validity, since the National Congress does not have jurisdiction to declare
an illegality. He added that this caused irreparable damage to Ecuador's democratic system, causing one of the
greatest crises in the legal and political institutions in the period from November 2004 to April 2005.
12.
He argued that, if his appointment as a Member was illegal or unconstitutional - as established
by the National Congress at the moment of his removal - this body was under an obligation to initiate an action
of unconstitutionality or impeachment proceedings for constitutional or legal breaches, which never happened.
The petitioner alleged that the latter was evidenced and proved in the judgments of the Inter-American Court
in the cases referred to above.
13.
He argued more specifically that the only grounds contemplated in domestic law upon which
Congress could remove him from office were "oversight" and impeachment. With regard to the first, he argued
that neither of the grounds for an exception or impediment to the exercise of the position applied to him.
Regarding the second, he maintained that there was no reason justifying said proceedings.
14.
He added that, had Congress eventually dismissed the members by means of an ‘oversight’ or
impeachment, it would have been appropriate to apply the process of surrogacy, with the substitute members
assuming the post of the electoral magistrates. However, the petitioner stated that Congress’ decision violated
the Constitution and human rights to such an extent, that even the designated substitutes were dismissed.
15.
He maintained that despite the fact that the Supreme Electoral Tribunal was not an organ of
the Judicial Branch under the Political Constitution of Ecuador of 1998, it exercised material jurisdiction and,
therefore, the Inter-American standard on judicial independence was applicable, especially in relation to
security of tenure.
16.
With regard to this right, the petitioner argued the violation of the rights to judicial
guarantees, the principle of legality, political rights and judicial protection.
17.
With regard to judicial guarantees, he indicated that the State failed to comply with his right
to be heard by a competent, independent and impartial judge, since Congress decided a matter bearing on his
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