QUITO, Sept. 28 (Xinhua) — Ecuador’s Minister of Culture and Heritage Juan Fernando Velasco resigned on Monday to dedicate himself to his run for president in February 2021 general elections.

The singer-songwriter, who had served as culture minister since July 2019, announced his decision to run as the candidate of the left-leaning Build Ecuador Movement at a ceremony in the southwest city of Guayaquil.

“I have accepted the opportunity to continue serving Ecuador as president of the republic, because I am concerned about the future of millions of compatriots,” Velasco said via Twitter.

He is one of 16 candidates competing to succeed President Lenin Moreno, whose term ends on May 24, 2021.

The election campaigns officially begin on Dec. 31, 2020 and end on Feb. 4, 2021. Enditem

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