Today the change of command ceremony is held in our country, there are several traditions that must be fulfilled in this ceremony that has been recognized worldwide for its republican and friendly character.
“Chile has been an example in the world in terms of the transfer of command from President to President, even when the one who leaves office does not have the same political position as the one who assumes it”affirms the academic of the Faculty of Law and Government and coordinator of the Citizen Education Center of the San Sebastián University, Alejandro Gómez.
“This is due to a democratic culture that is rooted in our country, a long republican history that has been maintained over the years and, in turn, because this republican act is regulated in the core by the Political Constitution of the Republic and by lawhe assures.
Although this Friday’s ceremony will have a more civic and less rigid character, at the request of the president-elect himself, there are several iconic republican traditions that must be maintained. Gómez tells us about some of them:
- Non-compulsory ceremony: Although the Constitution does not indicate that the presence of the outgoing president is mandatory, it is a tradition that he attends; even when he does not attend does not prevent the President-elect from assuming his functions.
- O’Higgins Piocha: The outgoing President must remove the presidential sash and the O’Higgins piocha, the element that in the transfer of command from one president to another symbolizes the handing over of power in Chile and has a symbolic value similar to the baton of command of other countries. It is a five-pointed star, approximately 7 cm. in diameter and enameled in red color that is hooked from the lower end of the presidential band.
- Presidential band: The presidential sash is delivered to the President of the Senate who in turn invests the President-elect with the new presidential sash. In this case, Gabriel Boric will wear a presidential sash at the change of command made by a group of workers from the Revolutionary Textile Union (Siritex). They made two versions, the traditional one and the other symbolic, using the traditional version in the ceremony.
- National anthem: Another important milestone is the singing of the National Anthem immediately after the new President is inaugurated. Once completed, the former President leaves the National Congress.
In relation to the citizen character that this takeover will have, Gómez emphasizes that always “It is important to maintain traditions, as it connects our past, present and future as a country. It is always positive that citizens feel more involved in these acts, since we must not forget that sovereignty resides in the Nation, which delegates it to its elected representatives through popular vote. The important thing is that it be an act of republican and civic friendship”ends the academic.