Mr. Director,

The first constitutional reform bill since the quorum was reduced to four sevenths was submitted to the Senate. It is an initiative that removes from the Executive the duty to go to Congress every 15 days to extend the State of Emergency and allows that, as from the sixth successive extension, the President may extend it for 60 days with the agreement of the National Congress. In addition, the bill adds a final clause establishing that the right of assembly may not be affected.

As the reform is proposed, it has two important shortcomings. First, it removes the government's duty to justify the need for a mechanism of exceptionality and the control of its actions through the oversight function of Congress. Secondly, it modifies the nature of the State of Emergency by preventing the limitation of the right of assembly, leaving it without teeth, and losing a fundamental measure to act against organized groups. In addition, the government does not seem to be aware of the exceptionality of the measure and the progressive decrease of its results.

Extensions of the State of Emergency are necessary to design long-term public policies that reinforce security, safety and protection.

Letter by Beatriz López, Constitutional Researcher of IdeaPaís, published by La Tercera newspaper in the edition of December 5, 2022. in the edition of December 5, 2022.