In the midst the pandemic, Chilean President Piñera makes changes in the Cabinet
In the midst the pandemic, Chilean President Piñera makes changes in the Cabinet

The President of Chile, Sebastián Piñera, changed six members of his cabinet during the country's health crisis and after suffering a severe defeat in Parliament who stripped down important differences in his ruling coalition.

In a ceremony at the Palacio de La Moneda, the President appointed Víctor Pérez as the new interior ministers, Andrés Allamand in Foreign Relations, Mario Desbordes as Defense, Karla Rubilar in Social Development, Cristian Monckeberg as General Secretary of the Presidency, and Jaime Bellolio as the government spokesman.

The change, the fifth in Piñera's second term, is marked by the arrival of several leaders, who until now, held a seat in Parliament.

Two of the changes, however, are from the previous cabinet.

The new head of Social Development, Karla Rubilar, was, until yesterday, a spokesperson for the government and will now be in charge of the ministry led by Cristián Monckeberg, General Secretary of the Presidency.

Hours before the appointment, Rubilar had highlighted the need to reach agreements, regardless of the political force to which the leaders belong.

"We have to learn as a coalition that we must work for the Chileans," Rubilar declared on a television program on TVN.

"If we can do that and leave our differences to advance, whether, from the government or not, everything will turn out well.

Two of the leaders who left the Government with this rearrangement, Gonzalo Blumel, now former interior minister, and Claudio Alvarado, former head of the General Secretary of the Presidency, were members of the Piñera Political Committee.

They were unable to convince several of the deputies and senators from the official coalition Chile Vamos last week.

The breakdown of the ruling party was essential for the approval of the constitutional reform for the withdrawal of 10% of pension funds, which was rejected by the Government and was finally approved by Parliament on Thursday, promulgated by Piñera a day later.

This legislative defeat added to the increasingly important questions about the management of the pandemic.

To date, 349,800 cases are counted throughout the country and a total of 9,240 deaths from coronavirus, the third-highest number in South America, only behind Brazil, and Peru, and the eighth in the world, according to the World Health Organization ( WHO).