Politics 10/04/2021

Jéssica Albiach: "The PSC is being very ungenerous with the country"

3 min

BarcelonaThe president of En Comú Podem in the Parliament, Jéssica Albiach (Valencia, 1979), continues to pressure ERC to break with JxCat and form a left-wing government.

ERC will vote for Aurora Madaula to replace Jaume Alonso-Cuevillas at the bureau. How do you see it?

— Junts came third in the elections, but in the negotiations they are clearly the winners. It has an enormous facility to be able to replace Cuevillas, we have had two failed investitures of Aragonès and in his investiture debates he has to claim that he wants to be the president without tutelage and without impositions by the threat of the Consell per la República.

It is probable that there will be no agreement by Sant Jordi (April 23) and it could come at the beginning of May. What do you think?

— Very bad news. We are in an unprecedented health, economic and social crisis. We have had a government in office for more than six months, people cannot afford this immobility. We are late, but there is an alternative.

The alternative you say is the one expressed by Pablo Iglesias on TVE: a government of ERC, comuns and CUP with the support of the PSC from the outside?

— We want a progressive alternative because the numbers are right and we need courage and generosity. This is the best formula.

The PSC and ERC veto each other.

— That's why they can't share a government.

Who should yield the most on this?

— We see the PSOE's immobility and we have a subordinate PSC that only makes statements in favour of pardons when there is no electoral appointment around the corner. It ends up playing electioneering games with issues that are not only humanitarian and justice-related, but also strategic for resolving the conflict. They are being very ungenerous with the country and very unstrategic. We also need ERC to disengage from Junts, otherwise we will continue to be stuck in a deadlock.

Are you still negotiating for the formation of a government?

— We haven't had any official meetings for weeks, but the channels of communication are still open. We have a very good relationship with the people of ERC.

Do you think that Junts would let ERC and the CUP govern alone?

— If Junts is left out in a minority ERC government, the fear I have is that in six months or a year we are going to have new elections. It would be very difficult for Junts to provide any stability. It would be in their interest for there to be elections soon to try to get ahead of ERC.

Jéssica Albiach: "The PSC is being very ungenerous with the country"

The pre-agreement with the CUP contains policies that you must like.

— It seems to me to be a good starting point, not a point of arrival. There are policies that are very important to us that are not referred to, such as environmental policies, because, for example, Barcelona World is not questioned.

Would you now approve the budgets of a government of ERC and Junts?

— I am not in a position to tell you what we would do, but ERC has to choose. The previous budgets came out even with Junts' reluctance. I don't understand why ERC wants to repeat the same mistakes.

It is a pro-independence party that also has prisoners and exiles, and this is something to prioritise Junts, isn't it?

— Pacting with Junts does not shorten prison time, nor does it lengthen it. It does not end up altering the resolution of the political conflict.

What can be discussed at the dialogue table?

— You have to be able to talk about everything

And decide what?

— Whatever the two parties decide. The big question is, if Junts and ERC govern again, whether we will have a government that believes in the dialogue table. At the first meeting of this round table we will probably not achieve the goals we set ourselves, but we cannot stop taking steps and working, for example, on the reform of the financing system.

You have been governing in Madrid for more than a year and there have been no pardons, nor the reform of the crime of sedition, nor the amnesty. How do you drag the PSOE along with you?

— I would like there to be a shared strategy among the Catalanist groups. ERC has allowed us to have budgets and also an investiture of Pedro Sánchez. It's difficult, but if we work together we can achieve much more for Catalonia.

After 4-M, will we get closer to a pardon?

— I never lose hope. We will work to make it happen.

When someone becomes vice-president, like Pablo Iglesias, and then leaves, isn't there a huge contradiction? Does he leave you stranded?

— Putting Yolanda Diaz as vice-president is not leaving us stranded, especially if he leaves to go to deliver the battle of Madrid. If on 4-M we don't get a progressive government, we will have an even bigger counter-power in the central government. There will be an even greater right-wingisation in the State as a whole, which will have consequences for Catalonia: it will push the plurinationality of the State further away.