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There is only one pupitrazo!

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There is only one pupitrazo!

There is only one pupitrazo!

Carlos Higuera

June 5, 2023 – 12:01 AM

*The critical scenario of the reforms

*The consequences of not agreeing

A real time trial will begin today in Congress for the auction of the first legislature of the Petro administration. Two weeks after the regular sessions end, it is evident that the priority legislative agenda is in serious difficulties.

The main evidence of this is that the three most important reforms for the Executive will definitely no longer be approved in this first year of Parliament and will remain pending for the second.

The breakdown of the majority parliamentary coalition, after the Casa de Nariño decided to exclude the center-right parties for their well-founded criticism of the pension, labor and health reforms, ended up passing a costly bill to the Government. The scenario would be different if President Petro had instructed his ministers to move forward with a true agreement on the scope of each of these initiatives.

Having acted to the contrary is what today has the health reform stalled in the second debate in the plenary session of the Chamber, with very little chance of being approved, since both the independent parties and those of the opposition, as well as a fringe of the Alianza Verde, they ask that the initiative be archived, unless it is clear that the Ministry of the branch agrees to introduce profound changes to the articles that with great difficulty could come out of the Seventh Commission.

The labor reform also has a critical scenario, to the point that the first debate on the presentation report has not even begun. Parties such as the Conservative, La U as well as the Democratic Center and Radical Change have already announced their negative vote, while there are many reservations among the liberal parliamentarians and a part of the greens. As much as the pro-government bench tries to speed up the discussion, the truth is that the alerts that are multiplying about the serious impacts that this initiative would have in terms of the quality and quantity of work that the productive system can generate, make it quite difficult for enable a go-ahead in the remaining two weeks of ordinary sessions and in the three or four extraordinary ones that will be cited, according to advances from the Minister of the Interior.

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The project that seeks to change the retirement system of Colombians does not have a clear outlook either. On the contrary, criticism and reservations about the implications of said reform increased significantly once the text of the paper, filed last week, was known.

As we have warned in these lines, there are characteristic elements in the three initiatives that justify the high concern of many political, economic, social and institutional sectors. In the first place, the government’s intention to return to markedly state systems and schemes, whose infeasibility has been sufficiently proven and which, moreover, do not correspond to the reality of the population’s needs in terms of timely and quality medical care, is evident. retirement guarantee in terms of guaranteed stability and profitability as well as a balanced labor market for both workers and companies.

There are other projects that are also pending approval in these last two weeks of ordinary sessions. The initiative that creates the agrarian jurisdiction, the one that prohibits oil exploration using the fracking technique and others of governmental and parliamentary origin are pending final debate in plenary. This approval must be given before June 20, since some are legislative acts that cannot be discussed in extraordinary sessions.

Added to the above is the urgency for the Senate to elect its president, a procedure that has not been possible due to the divisions in the Historical Pact. Likewise, it is imperative that the boards of directors of both legislative bodies lay the foundations to begin the process of electing the Comptroller General.

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Given all of the above, it is understandable why not a few analysts consider that this legislature has had a rather bumpy and unproductive second stretch, despite the fact that work has been going on since February 7, when the first summons was given to extras.

What is important in any case is that both the Government and the benches act with sufficient responsibility, avoiding at all costs the so-called desks, especially in the initiatives with the highest impact on the daily lives of Colombians. Lost time cannot be recovered by giving the go-ahead run over in commissions and plenary sessions to initiatives that require detailed analysis. There is already enough precedent of how these last-minute efforts in Parliament end up giving rise to projects where the so-called ‘micos’ swarm, which sooner or later end up being declared unconstitutional by the Constitutional Court.

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