Monday, April 22, 2024

OPINION AND ANALYSIS | 20-03-2024 22:02

Nicolás Posse, Karina Milei and Santiago Caputo: the ‘Bermuda triangle’ stalking government officials

The three members of Javier Milei’s inner circle have the authority to bounce any Cabinet member they see fit – and there have already been nine top-level exits in the first three months of the president’s term.

Karina 'el jefe' Milei, Cabinet Chief Nicolás Posse and spin doctor supremo Santiago Caputo are the trio that make up the "Bermuda triangle" that is stalking the ministers and officials of the Javier Milei’s fledgling government. 

The powerful trio are responsible for at least nine high-level exits and resignations in the first 100 days of libertarian government. Or that at least was the explanation given to Perfil by one of the rejects, who assures that there are already several making reference to that maritime triangle where ships and aircraft have been mysteriously disappearing for centuries. 

The methodology repeats itself. Officials advance in what they suppose is their exclusive area of work without suspecting that they are meddling with some aspect of interest to Posse or Karina. Without any previous alert, they are then summoned to explain themselves but it is too late for arguments at that stage. 

Without being given any time to reply, their exits are leaked to the media while some rapid response is sought.

"Karina is the presidential rearguard. If she lowers her thumb, there is no time to make any last defence in front of Javier. The role of [Santiago] Caputo is to set the most deeply ideological course. Posse is the guardian of the administration and the toughest of them all," an ex-official who has passed through that triangle explained to Perfil.

"When you see an exit without understanding the reason, take an attentive look at the Official Gazette in the next few days and you will see who in the Cabinet has remained with something of that," was their summary. 

With the recent exit of Omar Yasín as Labour secretary, nine officials have been ejected until now by the Karina-Caputo-Posse trio. The official arguments were far from being the real motives for throwing them out. This latest case was presented as Yasín’s presumed responsibility for the scandal of the Executive Branch salaries but it was, in reality, Posse’s aspiration to place Grupo Techint’s former lawyer Julio Cordero in the post.

The same fate was suffered by Osvaldo Giordano, the former director of ANSES social security administration, whom Milei accused of "sleeping with the enemy" as the husband of Alejandra Torres, the HCF (Hacemos Coalición Federal) deputy who voted against an article of the ‘Ley de Bases’ omnibus bill during its second reading. 

Before Yasin, Human Capital Minister Sandra Pettovello had thrown out his Labour undersecretary Horacio Pitrau.

One of the first to go was Eduardo Roust, who started out as Communication undersecretary without ever receiving official confirmation of his role. In the same part of government, Media & Communication secretary Belén Stettler was an early dismissal. 

Former Mining secretary Flavia Royón became a target for "responding" to Salta Governor Gustavo Sáenz, one of those dubbed a "traitor" by the government.

One of the noisiest exits was Infrastructure "superminister" Guillermo Ferraro. While a press operation was installed that he had been dumped for leaking information to the media, Posse had reportedly wanted his head to hang onto key areas of the management of state companies and questions referring to ENACOM regulatory agency of communications including Internet.

Enrique Rodríguez Chiantore, in charge of monitoring health services (Superintendencia de Servicios de Salud), learned of his dismissal via WhatsApp: "I got up in the morning when I had several messages saying: 'I’m so sorry,' so I opened the Official Gazette and saw the news," he explained to Radio Mitre. 

Posse had dismissed him "to increase the influence of Mario Lugones, the Cabinet chief’s advisor," he then told the La Nación newspaper.

The latest departure was Pablo Rodriguéz, the official in charge of distributing food to soup kitchens under the orbit of Social Development Secretary Pablo de la Torre.

Ramón Indart

Ramón Indart


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