Àlex Tort, Iñaki Pardo Torregrosa
Esquerra and Junts per Catalunya have taken just over three months to come to an agreement. The negotiations finally broke loose this weekend after two meetings between the candidate for the presidency of the Generalitat and national coordinator of the Republicans, Pere Aragonès, and the general secretary of JxCat, Jordi Sànchez, who had a prison permit. During the talks, the two leaders left the independence strategy and the Consell for the Republic for later – issues that stressed the dialogue to the point of breaking it – but a compromise was reached to create a new space for coordination and strategic direction that will make up the two majority independence formations together with the CUP, Òmnium Cultural and the Assemblea Nacional Catalana (ANC). While this new body works, the Consell per la República will be reformed, which will not finally assume the direction and leadership in this regard, as this newspaper advanced.
“It is not an agreement that makes one or the other come out defeated or victorious,” Sànchez remarked during his speech in the gardens of the Palau Robert in Barcelona, while facing what was assured by Aragonès in previous days that Junts intended that the the entity based in Waterloo will be the guardian of the Generalitat, has stepped out to highlight that “it has never intended to dictate” the steps of the Government.
Be that as it may, finally, both parties will reissue an Executive that ended up worn out in the last legislature. One of the greatest challenges now will be to regain the confidence of the electorate and to do so it commits, alongside moving towards independence, prioritizing social and economic rescue to face the effects of the covid.
Precisely, in the gardens of the Palau Robert in Barcelona, in his first words to the press after the agreement, Aragonès has assured that the new Government will work to recover “the trust” caused “by the lack of understanding that has existed until today ”. The presidential candidate highlighted that a pact is being sealed to advance towards the Catalan republic and to put social policies at the service of the citizenry. “We have needed a long time, probably too long. It has taken too long and we move our will for the future to make this different […], but getting all the proposals and points of view together is often not easy ”, he pointed out.
For the still acting vice president of the Government, the new Catalan Executive “will be strong” and emerges with “renewed energy.” Thus, he affirmed that alongside the commitment to advance towards independence to “assert the strength of having exceeded 50% of the votes and making the goals of amnesty and self-determination inevitable”, the future Government sets itself a clear priority: ” a transformative agenda in the economic and social sphere ”to counteract the effects of the pandemic.
On the part of Junts, Sànchez has valued as a “fundamental element” the fact that the two strategic views of independence have been “combined” in a “solid and coherent” way in the pact, which have been a common reason for dispute between the two partners. “It was not a question of putting two eyes on a document, we have tried to combine the two plural approaches to move forward in a coherent and solid way,” he pointed out.
The JxCat leader has also warned those who saw them “unable” to tune in to both strategies and reach an agreement, who wanted them “divided and failed,” will discover that they have been wrong “and it will be seen that” they had a partisan look. ” The agreement has had the unanimous endorsement of the Junts executive and between this Tuesday night and Wednesday at noon it will be submitted to the trial of the militancy in a binary consultation.
Sànchez has been convinced that the bases will ratify the pact, but that if the affiliates do not endorse it, the electoral repetition is not contemplated and he has promised to invest Aragonès with their votes, even if he is outside the Government.
Sànchez assumes that the JxCat bases will ratify the pact, but he points out that otherwise they will facilitate the investiture
As both Aragonès and Sànchez have pointed out, the agreement respects the written commitment that Esquerra and the CUP made in March. The Cup will have to analyze and study now if this is so. In case of variations, they have already warned that they would submit the pact again to a vote of their militancy. “We assume it and we believe that it is perfectly acceptable. We are convinced that this is the case, ”the Republican clarified regarding the compatibility of the agreements. Sànchez has acknowledged that there are aspects “not coincident” with what was signed between ERC and the CUP, but he hopes to reach an agreement so that these points do not “collide” different interests.
Regarding the independence strategy, Aragonès has affirmed that the foundations are being laid today, but that it must be developed and worked on. But he wanted to show his conviction that today efforts should be made to ensure the smooth running of the negotiating table between the Spanish and Catalan governments, which only met on February 26, 2020, when Quim Torra was still chairing the Generalitat.