The Constitutional Convention has been in a holding pattern since Sunday, July 4, when members voted for their leaders. The government cites technical difficulties. However, according to some constituents, it’s much more than that.
This morning, July 6, it was confirmed that the Constitutional Convention will not be in session for the second day in a row since its inauguration on Sunday, July 4.
According to the government, this is due to technical difficulties. As reported by CNN Chile, the Secretary General’s deputy secretary, Máximo Pávez, said that the government would first strengthen the related health protection measures and technical elements, and then report back in the afternoon every element needed for the Convention to be functional on wednesday morning, July 7.
This was the second false start to the Convention’s sessions. Yesterday, the Convention was set to convene at 3 p.m. at the former Congress building in Santiago. However, health measures had not been implemented and basic infrastructure was not working, including microphones, streaming services, and intercoms.
Rossana Vidal, independent constituent, said that “sanitary measures were not given.” Jorge Baradit, Socialist Party constituent, commented that “the government knew six months ago about the restrictions that we have due to Covid, and today, computers were not working, … they weren’t able to have microphones working, or rooms prepared for this second session to work.”
Constituents from the Apruebo Dignidad list, Lista del Pueblo, and the Socialist Party demanded that Secretary General Minister Juan José Ossa, Deputy Secretary Máximo Pavez, and the person in charge of the Administration Secretary for the Convention, Francisco Encina, all step down from their positions.
University of Chile Dean Ennio Vivaldi tweeted that, as a temporary measure, the university had put at the Convention’s disposal rooms at “every building and infrastructure from Arica to Puerto Williams.”
The Convention’s vice president, Jaime Bassa, said that he and the Convention’s president, Elisa Loncón, would be meeting today to discuss Vivaldi’s offer, adding that “if the government doesn’t guarantee institutional, technical, and sanitary conditions needed for the Convention to work normally, we will make every effort to provide them for the Convention.”
A través de una carta a su presidenta, @elisaloncon, las y los rectores de las Universidades públicas @uestatales hemos puesto a disposición de la Convención Constitucional todas nuestras sedes e infraestructura de Arica a Puerto Williams.
— Ennio Vivaldi (@EnnioVivaldi) July 6, 2021
Javiera is from Santiago de Chile, she is studying journalism at Universidad de Chile, since 2017 and doing her internship at Chile Today.