Chile’s Boric urges wisdom after right-wing wins vote to draft constitution

Santiago de Chile, May 7 (EFE).- Chile’s President Gabriel Boric urged the far-right Republican Party on Sunday “to act with wisdom and temperance” after it overwhelming won a vote to elect a council to draft the country’s new constitution.

In a nationwide televised address, the president also urged the far-right party to “not make the same mistakes” as the first attempt to rewrite the constitution, which was rejected in a referendum in September.

“The previous process, we have to say, failed because we did not know how to listen to each other among those who thought differently. I want to invite the Republican Party not to make the same mistake we made,” he said.

With more than 95 percent of the ballots counted, the Republican Party has obtained 35.4 percent of the votes and a minimum of 20 delegates required to have veto power in the drafting of the new constitution.

If the right-wing parties join hands with the center-right Chile Vamos bloc, which obtained 21.1 percent of the votes, they would the over 30 seats necessary to approve the new constitutional draft without the need to reach an agreement with the left-wing.

“This process cannot be about vendettas, but about putting Chile and its people ahead of partisan or personal interests,” Boric said.

Formed in 2019, the Republican Party is led by José Antonio Kast, who lost to Boric in the 2021 elections and is a staunch defender of the neoliberal model established in Chile by the military dictatorship (1973-1990).

“When the pendulum of history moves from one extreme to another incessantly in a short time, it is always the most vulnerable people who bear the brunt of the confrontation between the elites. The leadership plays a part in stopping this pendulum movement,” the president added.

Although the ruling coalition came in second with 28.5 percent of the votes, Boric said that Chile once again has “the opportunity to build, with dialog and meeting, a Magna Carta that represents the country’s desires.”

Although the final distribution of the 50 councilors who will draft the new constitution proposal is still unknown, everything indicates that neither the center-left Todo por Chile nor the populist Party of the People will secure the required votes to enter the council.

The 50 councilors – 25 men and 25 women -, will take office on June 7 and will have five months to draft the proposed text, which will be submitted to a referendum on Dec. 17.

The councilors will work on a preliminary document that 24 experts appointed by parliament have been drafting since March. EFE


Related Articles

Back to top button