Politics 08/07/2021

Spanish government denies negotiating Court of Auditors fund with Generalitat: "The decree has things which are hard to understand"

Minister insists it is being looked at and that any parts considered illegal will be taken to Constitutional Court

2 min
The first vice-president of the Spanish government, Carmen Calvo, during an informative lunch organised by Europa Press.

MadridThe Spanish Government is unsure about how to react to the fund created by the Generalitat to guarantee the bonds demanded by the Court of Auditors over the Catalan government's foreign action. It already happened initially with the case opened by the audit body, which Minister of Transport and president Pedro Sánchez's right-hand man José Luis Ábalos described as a "stone in the road" of dialogue. But opposite, the Spanish government has the Spanish right who bellicose tone is keeping the government from openly criticising the Court. This could be turn into its first clash with the new Catalan government led by Pere Aragonès.

The first vice president of the Spanish executive, Carmen Calvo, has assured on Thursday that they are not negotiating with the Generalitat the fund's form in order to avoid an appeal to the Constitutional Court, denying reports by El País. During a breakfast briefing organised by Europa Press and accompanied by many socialist ministers at a time that from quarters are questioning her continuity in the cabinet, Calvo has insisted that "the [Spanish] government does not negotiate legality" and has clarified that it is "analysing" the decree and, "if some parts are unacceptable" in terms of its constitutionality, it will present an "appeal" at the Constitutional Court.

However, she has already said that in her opinion the decree contains things that are "hard to understand" and that this is why the Spanish executive "will not overlook anything that cannot be legally accepted". After a first analysis, she noted that "part of the text says that the sentence is not final until it is appealed outside the country's courts, but the country's judicial channels end here". This is a reference to the constant comment by the Spanish government that the decision of the Court of Auditors can be appealed to the courts as such: first to the Supreme Court and then to the Constitutional Court. Just last week the Supreme Court dismissed Artur Mas's appeal against the fine for organising the 2014 vote.

Vox complaint

At the moment, however, the Spanish government says they will continue to analyse the text and there is no clear answer while both the PP and Vox and Ciudadanos have already said they will appeal the fund created by the Generalitat. Ciudadanos has gone a step further this Thursday and has submitted a written question to the Spanish government in Parliament asking for explanations, to clarify whether it will appeal to the Constitutional Court and whether it has considered intervening the Catalan administration's accounts once again. In addition, they ask what Ábalos meant when he described the actions of the Court of Auditors against the Generalitat as a "stone in the road".

Vox has gone further still and has already confirmed that it will present an appeal of unconstitutionality, will also sue members of the executive before the Superior Court of Justice of Catalonia (TSJC) and will report the president of the Generalitat, Pere Aragonès, the Minister of Presidency, Laura Vilagrà, and the Minister of Economy, Jaume Giró, to the Prosecutor's Office.

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