Chile's Senate Thursday passed a bill whereby people shall be allowed to withdraw an additional ten per cent from the pension funds to be able to cope with the hardships caused by job losses and the closing of businesses owing to the restrictive health measures against Covid-19.
The decision was a defeat for President Sebastián Piñera, who even saw some of his political allies vote in favour of the measure and against his own personal preferences. Earlier this week, Piñera had sought a ruling from the Constitutional Court to halt the bill's parliamentary treatment.
The bill now goes back to the House of Deputies where its approval is taken for granted since it had already been passed there suffered no substantial changes in the Senate.
After the Senate's voting results Piñera reportedly summoned the heads of the parties that make up the Vamos Chile coalition to the La Moneda palace for an emergency meeting.
In addition to Piñera's isolation within his own ranks, Socialist lawmakers have pressed for his impeachment, because he “has persistently decided not to listen. He has not listened to the opposition, he has not listened to his own parliamentarians and he has not listened to the people of Chile. The situation is unsustainable in all aspects: health, social and economic.”
With the entire populace under a lockdown or heavy restrictions in an anti-covid-19 manoeuvre despite being the country in the region with the most successful vaccination campaign, unrest seems to be mounting through cacerolazos, noisy protests consisting of banging pans and pots.