Politics 12/04/2021

ERC hopes to unblock the investiture before May 9

JxCat holds Esquerra responsible for the current state of negotiations

Jordi Ribalaygue, Núria Orriols i Anna Mascaró
3 min
Pere Aragonès to the second investiture session

After the vice-president and aspiring president Pere Aragonès broke his silence on Saturday on the negotiations seeking to "hurry" Junts per Catalunya, this Monday the spokeswoman of the party, Marta Vilalta, has continued in the same line assuring that there are no "insurmountable obstacles" to achieve a pact and that she hopes that it is possible to close it before May 9, when the state of alarm finishes. Although the Republican leader has preferred not to set clear limits for an understanding with the party of Carles Puigdemont, has reiterated that it has to be "as soon as possible", the same phrase that ERC used the day after the elections of 14-F.

The calendar of the negotiators has been modulating as the days passed after the failed debate of investiture on Tuesday before Easter. On that day it was expected to have a pact finished by Sant Jordi, but now from the two parties already speak of late April or early May. Junts, which had planned an extraordinary congress on Saturday 24 April to choose the president of the national council, has postponed it to Friday 7 and Saturday 9 May.

Although ERC rushes JxCat, JxCat blames ERC. "It is up to ERC to lead the negotiations," said party spokeswoman Elsa Artadi, who has reaffirmed saying that the Republicans chose to try to reach a pact with En Comú rather than with them. "Then they proceeded to an agreement with the CUP that has not helped Aragonès to be elected president" she remarked, and indicated that now it is time for the two current government partners to negotiate to try to reach an alliance for the legislature.

Artadi explained that they have exchanged documents on public policies over the past week focusing on the government programme. She has not gone into whether it is compatible or not with the agreement between ERC and CUP and has considered that once closed they will see if there are "coincidences" or if the agreements can be changed.

In any case, the pace of the talks does not satisfy Esquerra, who believes that there have already been enough meetings - it has estimated about twenty in recent months, although in last week they only met once - to build a government. "It is compatible with a good agreement to do it quickly," said Vilalta, adding that he does not understand that "someone wants to extend the interim situation. For Republicans currently "there is no insurmountable obstacle" and "there is no reason to wait any longer".

Faced with this situation, this Monday at a press conference En Comú have again insisted that ERC break with Junts. They have also put pressure on PSC candidate, Salvador Illa, to open talks with Pere Aragonès to try to build an alternative left-wing government. "The proposals do not fall from the sky, you have to work politically," he said, reports Mireia Esteve–. The PSC is reaching out to ERC. They ask the Republicans to facilitate a government between socialists and En Comú and even share a Government with them, said parliamentary spokesperson, Alícia Romero. However, there is small print: ERC would have to "renounce independence" in their approaches in the executive -reports Cesc Maideu.

Borràs denies having censured Cuevillas

On the other hand, the Speaker, Laura Borràs, has denied this Monday in an interview at Cafè d'idees of Radio 4 that Jaume Alonso-Cuevillas's substitution on the from the parliamentary bureau was in a way censure. His cessation was a consequence of some declarations to Vilaweb, in which he expressed that he was not in favour of processing proposals of resolution like those the Parliament approved on the king and the self-determination before the risk of disqualification. However, Borràs has insisted that the deputy is "a free person, who has expressed his opinions with complete freedom and no one has censored him." However, he stressed that we must "keep in mind that at the Parliamentary bureau and within Junts there are debates that are not open".

"It is a question of coherence on what should be done in a Parliament and what shouldn't", she assured, and considered: "At the bureau we should not censor ourselves: we have to be able to carry out our work with complete freedom". In fact, Borràs has defended that precisely "to preserve the inviolability of Parliament" and to allow "the parliamentary debate without precautions as a result of threats" is one of the reasons why she decided to assume the presidency of the institution. "From the Speakership of the Parliament you do not deploy a programme, but you do make decisions that affect institutions," he said.