Argentina's society was outraged Tuesday after it was announced that President Alberto Fernández and First Lady Fabiola Yáñez were let off the hook for violating the lockdown he had himself decreed during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Nothing happened here, summed up after the Judiciary agreed to let the Presidential couple pay a fine (or a donation) for the alleged misdemeanor at a time most citizens were encouraged not to see their loved ones.
According to the head of state, Yáñez had organized a birthday party for a group of friends at the Olivos Presidential residence, thus dubbing the scandal The Olivosgate.
The celebration was attended by nine people, five of whom did not have the corresponding permit. President Fernández himself admitted Fabiola called a meeting with her friends and a toast. I realize that it should not have been done and I regret that it happened.
I should have taken more care that I did not, he added.
Pablo Musse, who was not allowed to visit his dying daughter Solange by a police blockade enforcing the lockdown Fernández had decreed while the presidential couple was partying, could hardly describe his feelings. Solange was suffering from cancer and could not receive visits from her relatives in her last days.
He is a scoundrel because he is nothing else. In this case, Justice does not have to be the same for everyone: he is the one who issued the DNU [decree], the one who broke it, and the one who lied to us. But that's what Justice is, with a little money you fix it. And so it was, they accepted it.
He is not an ordinary person in this case. He should go to trial, apologize, and never again occupy a public office, Musse said.
Political analysts in Buenos Aires agreed that the Olivosgate scandal might end up a decisive issue regarding Fernández's reelection bid next year.