“If I could answer all the questions, they would give me a Nobel Prize.” This phrase in a relaxed tone reflected what was the visit of the current High Commissioner for Human Rights. Michelle Bachelet to the Constitutional Convention, where she spoke before the Political System Commission in her capacity as former president.
Bachelet arrived after 9 in the morning at the former Congress, and after a meeting with the table of the constituent body, he made a presentation in the hemicycle before the conventional present in the room and by zoom.
Then a space for questions was opened, where she was “bombarded” literally by the questions of the constituents, who required their opinions on issues as different as the political system, multinationality, parties, electoral system, duration of the presidential term and the Armed Forces, among others. .
There were 20 interventions by conventionalists and each one asked 2 to 3 questions, which led to the frank comment of the former president on the breadth of topics. In any case, he addressed several of the topics – although he acknowledged that in some he did not have an opinion and in others he admitted unequivocally that he “had no idea” – but at the end he gave a message pointing to the heart -more than to the contents- of the constituent work:
“I know that they have been the victims of much criticism, they have the problem that there are so many expectations in the Constitution, and one can never fulfill all expectations. You are brave, “said the ex-president in the final part of her speech.
Among his advice, Bachelet recommended that they “seek agreements, listen to each other” and “do pedagogy”. “Communicate more what you do, communicate better,” he said.
“6 years of a bad President, it is a tragedy for a country”
Among some of the issues consulted, the former president was emphatic that “what matters are people, there is no perfect government system.” Although he ruled out implementing a parliamentarianism here in the country or the figure of a prime minister, as happens in other countries.
Regarding the political system and the relationship with the parties, Bachelet recalled that in his first presidency he led a coalition of 5 parties, and later another of 7. “And it’s not easy. If your government is more or less, it is easy to hit it. I’m not going to name anyone (in particular), but I have a very good memory, “he said.
In this context, she was emphatic in the collaborative role of the communities. “The parties cannot try to govern the President of the Republic,” he said.
On the duration of the presidential term, other issues required, Bachelet commented that “four years is short, one is not enough. (But) six years of a bad President is a tragedy for a country ”.
Regarding the possibility of advancing the elections if the Convention defines a new political system, Bachelet also set a position, and was in favor of a “transition”. “The people elected parliamentarians, President of the Republic, these people have to be able to fulfill their term,” he says.
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Statement to the press
Before leaving the former Congress building, Bachelet made a statement to the press in which he highlighted the “good level, seriousness of discussion and love for Chile” at the Convention.
The ex-president affirmed that she wanted to attend in person “because I believe a lot in these constituents. I believe that their role is fundamental.”
“I wanted to be here to give them my support, exchange some experiences (…) Not everything is resolved with the Constitution, but many things are essential to define, and that they respond to what the people want: a State that can really give guarantees of rights to all its citizens, “added the former president.
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Bachelet before the Constitutional Convention: “I know that they have been the victims of much criticism. I congratulate you, you are brave ”