Page:Statesman's Year-Book 1899 American Edition.djvu/801

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445

CHILE.

(Kepublica de Chile.)

Constitution and Government. TuE Kepublic of Chile threw oif allegiance to the Crown of ►Spain by the declaration of independence of September 18, 1810, finally freeing itself from the yoke of Spain in 1818. The Con- stitution voted by the representatives of the nation in 1833, with a few subsequent amendments, establishes three powers in the State — the legislative, the executive, and the judicial. The legislative power is vested in the National Congress, consisting of two assemblies, called the Senate and the Chamber of Deputies. The Senate is composed of members, elected for the term of six years, in the proportion of one Senator for every three Deputies ; while the Chamber of Deputies, composed of members chosen for a period of three years, consists of one representative for every 30,000 of the population, or a fraction not less than 15,000; both bodies are chosen by the same electors — the Chamber directly by departments, and the Senate directly by provinces on the cumulative system of voting. Electors must be 21 years of age, and can read and write. In 1887 there were 134,119 registered electors or 1 to 18 of the population. In the election of deputies in March 1888, 89,977 citizens voted or 67 per cent, of those who had the right to vote. Deputies must have an income of 100/. a year, and Senators 400/. The executive is exercised by the President of the Republic elected for a term of five years, by indirect vote, the people nominating, by ballot, delegates who appoint the President. A retiring President is not re-eligible. In legislation the President has a modified veto ; a bill returned to the chambers with the President's objections may, by a two- thirds vote of the members present (a majority of the members being present), be sun^tained and become law. The day of a Presi- dential election is June 25 of the last of the five years of a Presi- dency ^ and the inauguration takes place on September 18 of the same year.

President of the Republic. — Sefior Errazuriz, elected June 25, 1896.

The salary of the President is fixed at 18,000 pesos, with 12,000 pesos for expenses.

The President is assisted in his executive functions by a Council of State, and a Cabinet or Ministry, divided into seven departments, under six Ministers, viz. : — Of the Interior ; of Foreign Affairs ; of Worship and Colonisation ; of Justice and Public Instruction ; of Finance ; of War and Marine ; of Industry