“President Petro accused Gaviria of his criticism of health reform”

“President Petro accused Gaviria of his criticism of health reform”

There are more questions than answers. The departure of three ministers from Gustavo Petro’s government was accompanied by all kinds of versions and hypotheses about the crisis that arose in the Casa de Nariño.

After the shock, hundreds of conjectures did not hesitate to jump forward. What happened? What have they failed? Will the ministerial turmoil continue? These are some of the questions pundits and political leaders are trying to explain.

In dialogue with EL HERALDO, the specialists put forward three scenarios to be evaluated: that of Gaviria and his serious objections to health care reform, the low visibility of the ministers’ management and the eventual negotiations with political parties.

leaks and repairs

Political analyst Sandra Borda pointed out that it is clear that Alejandro Gaviria’s departure is due to the former minister’s ongoing and public objections to health care reform.

He added that while it is not known whether Gaviria was the one who delivered to the media the letter of observation signed by some officials on the reform of Minister Carolina Corcho, that leak was an episode that marked relations between the former education minister and Gustavo Petro broke up.

She explained that for her the hypothesis that the changes were due to the meeting with the political parties is not very accurate. “I don’t think it’s done to include bureaucratic quotas for people from the traditional parties, because when we looked at the nominations we found that this was not the case.”

He pointed out that their departure in the presence of Patricia Ariza and María Isabel Urrutia, in the background, may be related to the president’s discomfort with his efforts.

“The political price of the government in this situation is a general sense that they have not been able to adapt in the state, that there is disorder, that there are very important efforts within the government that are not evolving as one would expect.”

Meanwhile, in dialogue with EL HERALDO, Jairo Libreros indicated that the president accused Gaviria of losing control over health reform.

“The wear and tear caused by the officials’ letter along with the leak is exhausting the president’s patience. It is that this document practically destroyed the reform. Analyzing Petro’s intervention at the end of the meeting with the presidents of the parties, one notes that the head of state has left behind the formula to propose alternative articles to implement the reform to the traditional parties.”

“The departure of Ariza and Urrutia is just a scapegoat because if it was due to poor results there, they should leave: the defense minister, the energy minister and the health minister himself,” he said.

For his part, Alejandro Blanco Zúñiga, a professor at UniLibre, explained that for him the departure of the 3 ministers could be due to the strengthening of national government alliances for the regional elections. “To win elections in many regions, the Historical Pact must forge alliances with traditional sectors.”

He added: “The change of ministry may also be a result of the series of reforms that will be presented to the legislature. In this sense, it is necessary to mention that the Liberal Party, the Conservatives and the United States, despite belonging to the government bank, have expressed structural objections to some reforms.

Similarly, Representative Juan Carlos Losada explained that Petro’s decision on Gaviria breaks with consensus discourse within the government and casts doubts on its willingness to listen.

Political pressure?

The cloud of doubts about the real reason for the ministers’ departure immediately grew.

One of them was Diego Molano, former defense minister of the Duque administration, who criticized the president’s decision and urged Congress not to bow to “pressure and jam.”

“Petro calls for broad dialogue with society to approve consensual reforms, but ousts ministers who disagree. He wants no dialogue, no consensus, but submission. We hope Congress acts responsibly and does not bow to pressure or jam,” the former official said.

María Fernanda Cabal was one of the other speakers. “When the government came to look at the jams, they realized they had run out. But skillfully and cunningly, he brought forward three ministers and with that he will be able to please the most discerning palates,” said the congressman. Petro quickly responded to the successive questions and points to his decision. “Ministerial changes do not depend on the meeting
with the presidents of the parties. You can look who the new and new ministers are and you will see that they have nothing to do with the informative suggestion you are making to your readers and listeners and it is all wrong,” replied the
director to the communicator.

Finally, Petro thanked the work of the current former ministers and stated that “with their contributions, they have contributed to enriching the debate and initiating the changes that the country has voted for. I invite you to help us make this to build a social pact wherever you are”.

In this sense, the president of the U party, Dilian Francisca Toro, indicated that it is not true that she requested the resignation of María Isabel Urrutia during the meeting. She indicated that she had not interfered with that ministry.

He also pointed out that new ministers come from his community.

For former minister Juan Fernando Cristo, Gaviria’s departure cast a blanket of doubt over President Gustavo Petro’s speech of unity and consensus. He explained that a diverse government will always be a huge challenge.

Notification by phone

The Chief of Cabinet of the Colombian Presidency, Laura Sarabia, responded to statements by former Ministers of Culture and Sports, Patricia Ariza and María Isabel Urrutia, in which they indicated that they found out that they were no longer in office minutes after the election. Speech by President Petro.

“The two ministers and the outgoing minister were aware of the decision,” Sarabia responded to the questions.

“The ministers, like the entire cabinet, were convened in the afternoon where they would be informed of the decision. For reasons unknown to me, they were not present, so they were notified by phone,” he said.

However, both Ariza and Urrutia explained that the determination was announced to the country without any consideration.

“They called me three minutes before the speech to tell me that the president would ask for my resignation,” said Ariza, who noted that the reasons for the ministry’s departure are still unclear.

In addition, he revealed that he had no meetings or direct conversations with President Gustavo Petro during his time in the portfolio.

Immediately afterwards she added that there was a rumor within the government of dissatisfaction with her vision of art. In addition, it turned out that she was not liked by President Petro’s wife, the first lady, Verónica Alcocer. He indicated that the new minister of culture, Ignacio Zorro, is a piano teacher for the daughters of the head of state and that Alcocer traveled with him as deputy minister to Venezuela without consulting him.

For her part, former sports minister María Isabel Urrutia was hurt by her surprise departure.

“They never told me anything. They told me there was a press conference, but I couldn’t attend because I was no longer a minister. That was the story. It wasn’t the way,” said the Olympic medalist, who pointed out that it is not true that Sarabia announced the decision by telephone.

Faced with this, Senator Paloma Valencia asked the ways of making this decision from Petro.

“The two female ministers have been removed by communicating with them in the address itself. It’s a big disrespect. Is it because they are women?” she said.

“There was a ministerial crisis and it was decided to change ministers”

The minister of politics, the minister of the interior, Alfonso Prada, explained that what the country saw yesterday was the result of the first ministerial crisis in the government of Gustavo Petro.

“There was a ministerial crisis, it was decided to replace some members of the cabinet. President Petro is sending important messages, but I think the most important thing is to call on all sectors of society to express their views on the reforms proposed in the Congress of the Republic,” Prada said in the media.

He reiterated that the intention of the cabinet together with President Gustavo Petro is to achieve team cohesion and determination to move forward vigorously. “We are reaching a defining moment for the administration as the great debates begin in Congress,” he stressed.

Faced with internal discussions, he noted that there is huge disagreement within the government. “Everyone has had the opportunity to express their point of view (…). The only thing that cannot be said is that the president has not facilitated internal dialogue scenarios,” he assured.

“As Alejandro Gaviria himself can attest, the president has been summoning us all weekends in Hatogrande with hours of discussion and the end product is the product presented to Congress. This does not make the Minister of Health and the critical ministers happy. If it came to censorship, the ministers who signed the published letter would leave, which is true,” he repeated.

Source: El Heraldo