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Court rejects Piñera’s challenge against third pension withdrawal in Chile

The Constitutional Court of Chile declared this Tuesday inadmissible the challenge presented by the government against the law that allows a third withdrawal of up to 10% of pension funds, dealing a severe blow to President Sebastián Piñera, who must now enact or veto the initiative of Congress.

By seven votes in favor and three against, the plenary session of the Constitutional Court resolved “not to accept the request for processing” presented by the government against the law that Congress passed on Friday and that allows a third withdrawal of up to 10% of the private pension funds, as a lifeline to face the economic crisis derived from the pandemic, according to an official statement.

“President Sebastián Piñera has shot himself in the feet; he has made a historic mistake,” said the opposition deputy of the center-left party PPD, Raúl Soto, once the Court’s vote had transcended.

After this decision, President Piñera must enact the initiative or he can also veto it, in which case it should be discussed again in Congress.

On December 30, the Constitutional Court had ruled against a similar initiative that proposed a second withdrawal of pension funds and that was also challenged by the conservative government, but it ended up being materialized after the presentation of a similar project by the government itself.

The Court did not give the reasons for the ruling, but before the start of the session of this sea one of its judges, Iván Aróstica, commented on some of the arguments that would be considered.

“Very important situations have occurred between December 30 and today. There are changes not only in factual situations; the health measures have been aggravated, there are resolutions, there are laws and there is the ruling of the Constitutional Court itself,” said the magistrate, who unlike the previous ruling, this Tuesday voted against the request for challenge presented by the Piñera government.

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