Santiago, Chile – Chilean President Sebastian Pinera began his last message to the nation this week by apologizing to families affected by the economic crisis caused by the coronavirus epidemic.
“Many people feel angry and frustrated because they did not always get the help they needed at the right time,” he said. he told the legislators Tuesday evening, surrounded by the walls of the Senate Assembly Hall near the Valparaiso Congress building.
Due to the epidemic, his small audience, all members of his cabinet, some political party leaders, attended his two-hour farewell speech, which was issued less than six months after the election, to initiate a new president.
The right-wing newspaper La Tercera welcomed Pinerra’s message of reconciliation, stressing the importance of dialogue and agreement on several key Chilean issues.
Despite this, the president will resign widely unpopularly, the once strong support base has now collapsed, his right-wing coalition was still shaking shocking defeat In last month’s election, it could have an impact on the upcoming presidential election, analysts say.
“Pinerra has been ousted by the people who voted for him, what is worse, right-wing supporters and members of Congress,” former diplomat Fernando Ayala told Al Jazeera. “The vast majority of Chileans reject the path of a social, economic and health crisis.”
Fatigue status quo
Pinera, who was re-elected in December 2017 with 54.5 percent of the vote, has been criticized for too long to deliver the financial aid he promised to Chilean families. The Chileans also said that aid was insufficient to meet their needs in the face of the economic downturn.
His government was constantly on the lookout for epidemic problems. The Chilean Medical Association has repeatedly accused health authorities of lacking transparency in reporting coronavirus-related information.
At the same time, many of Pinerra’s supporters are particularly responsible for the disastrous results of his right-wing coalition in last month’s “mega-election” in which Chileans voted for 155 the draft of the new constitution,
According to political analysts, this was the worst defeat for the country’s right in decades.
Robert Funk, an academician at the University of Chile’s Institute of Public Relations, said the results showed that “Chileans are skeptical of traditional politicians, tired of existing political parties and looking for new faces.”
“So, aside from Pinera, this mood affects the candidates of all parties,” Funk told Al Jazeera.
In this context, the Chileans did not have high expectations from Pinera’s speech on Tuesday night. Proponents of his case have been working to make the actual transcript of this statement available online.
But that changed when Pinerra announced that his administration would quickly reverse the law legalizing same-sex marriage. “The time has come for same-sex marriage,” he said.
“I think we need to look deeply at the value of freedom, including the freedom to love and to be married to a loved one.”
Such a move has long been expected, as the initiative was promoted by former President Michel Bachelet more than 10 years ago, և it was applauded by most Chileans, with the exception of the conservative right-wing coalition in Pinera.
The bomber struck shortly after noon in front of a government building, much to the chagrin of many, including Pinera’s cabinet, as same-sex marriage was never on the public agenda or in the government’s agenda.
Still, Pinheira fiercely defended his leadership, what he called his political “legacy.”
There is no doubt that during his second term as President, the greatest success of the President was the implementation of the COVID-19 vaccination program by the government. Pinhera և and his team were in a hurry to get vaccines at a time when many other countries were in turmoil.
According to Our World in Data, which tracks coronavirus rates, Chile became the country with the highest rate of COVID-19 vaccination in March, averaging 1.08 beats per 100 people per day.
But it has done little to strengthen Pinheira’s popularity. He now has a 9% approval rating, political analysts say, which could affect the outcome of the November presidential election.
Ayala, a former diplomat, said that while opposition forces remained divided, “right-wing candidates are trying to stay away from Pinera, hoping to impress their potential voters again” ahead of the November 21 vote.
However, the president seems to be stepping down, still insisting that his administration has done great things for Chile.
“His speech seems to reveal a parallel reality, with the names of many programs, but with little progress. “And this is what the general population perceives,” Heraldo Munoz, a former presidential candidate and chairman of the Party for Democracy (Partido por la Democracia), told reporters on Tuesday afternoon by a staunch critic of Pinera.
Political analysts say Pinerra could lead the process of drafting a new constitution to replace the decades-old Augusto Pinochet dictatorship. But the blows from the right in the polling stations made it impossible.
“The paradox is that this is the president who came to power with the idea of making a second transition and leading a new phase of development,” political scientist Mirea Davila told Al Aze Azira.
“Instead, he eventually buried Pinochet’s constitution, suffering an electoral defeat for his political sector that has not been seen since 1990.”