Piñera Signs Decree Calling Constitutional Referendum
Above photo: Chile’s President Sebastian Pinera at U.N. headquarters in New York, U.S., Sept. 24, 2019. | Photo: Reuters
The process will begin with On April 26, 2020, when Chileans will choose between two mechanisms for drafting their new constitution.
Chile’s President Sebastian Piñera Friday signed the decree that summons the constitutional plebiscite on April 26, 2020, which will allow Chileans to decide whether or not they want a new constitution.
“We are going to live a transcendent period in these 121 days that we have until the plebiscite,” Piñera said at an event carried out at the Palace of La Moneda in Santiago.
This process seeks to change the constitution generated under the tutelage of the dictator Augusto Pinochet (1973-1990), which is one of the main demands that citizens have raised in the protests that have developed continuously since October.
On April 26, 2020, besides deciding whether or not to support a constitutional change, Chileans will choose between two mechanisms for drafting the new constitution.
While the first would be a constitutional convention composed entirely of citizens, the second would be a convention made up of 50 percent by current lawmakers and 50 percent by elected members.
According to Sebastian Pinera there have been no violations of human rights by police in #Chile and that the images are part of a Disinformation campaign #ChileMarchaElViernes#ChileResiste #RenunciaPiñera
— nonouzi (@Gerrrty) December 27, 2019
If the Chileans mostly support the elaboration of a new constitution, the mechanism that receives the highest votes will be taken into consideration.
The constitutional convention members will be elected in October 2020, during the elections of regional and municipal authorities.
Subsequently, these members will have nine months to draft the new Chilean constitution, which must be submitted to a new referendum for citizen ratification.
While Piñera has pompously described this process as the result of a “Constitutional Agreement,” in fact, there is widespread dissatisfaction with a procedure that has been established without really taking into account what citizens have been demanding.
Imposible Piñera . Es verdad. Es tu País. La represión la ordenaste vos y tus secuaces.#ChileNoSeRinde
Para Piñera, los videos de la represión “son falsos o filmados fuera de Chile” https://t.co/PXLxjarxWO vía @Ambitocom
— SilviaR. K.✌️🇦🇷 (@Silvia6566) December 27, 2019
“Piñera, you’re impossible. It is true. It is your country. You and your henchmen ordered the repression. Chile does not give up.” The meme reads, “According to Piñera, the videos about the repression ‘are fake or filmed outside of Chile.’ The president said that videos are fake and aimed at creating a sense of disorder and crisis.”
On Dec 22., the Communist Party (PC) president Guillermo Teillier indicated that the constitutional drafting process must guarantee the participation of historically excluded social groups.
“We agreed to participate in the April referendum but on the condition that the Senate approves what is missing, that is, gender parity, seats reserved for Indigenous peoples, and inclusion of independent citizens,” Teillier said.
“If these modifications are not approved, then it would be a rigged process.”