The Qualifying Court of Elections (Tricel) dismissed the appeal of the mayor of San Felipe, Patricio Freire Canto, and confirmed the sanction against him in the process he faces for abandonment of duties.
Freire must move away from the municipality for three months from now, which means that he will not be able to return for the April 11 elections for which he is registered as an independent candidate. The defense of the communal chief expected the deadline to govern since he was sanctioned in August, which was dismissed by the court.
In addition, the edil will have to pay a fine of about 10 million pesos, which will be deducted from your salary.
The process dates back to last August, when the Regional Electoral Court (TER) in Valparaiso welcomed the request made by Councillors Christian Beals and Juan Carlos Sabaj to remove the communal chief for a series of non-compliances.
The main one dates back to 2018, when the communal authority refused to comply with a decision of the Municipal Council, by not taking the dismissal of the municipal administrator, Patricio González, an issue that also has as its edge the scandal of LED luminaires that dots other municipalities of the country.
In fact, one of the councillors’ accusations against Freire relates to a 2012 tender for the «improvement and service of maintaining the public lighting of San Felipe commune», which was awarded to the company Citeluz. For this fact, recently, a complaint was filed against the suspended mayor and his major flat in San Felipe.
According to the Tricel’s resolution, «the allegations and evidence given by the Mayor, Mr Freire, fail to establish the concurrence of exiles from his administrative responsibility, nor do they call into question the conviction of this Court that actions and omissions, as the highest building authority, show that he has incurred abandonment of his duties».
In addition, the judgment states that «the fact denounced and accepted, that is, not having issued the mayoral decree of dismissal of the Municipal Administrator, notwithstanding having agreed in this way by the Municipal Council, denotes a serious oversight not only of its legal obligations but also of what was resolved in that regard by the Supreme Court».