PRESS RELEASE VIA NEWS784
12 May 2018 • Mr Torra, the candidate for the presidency of the Generalitat, the Catalan regional government, has today delivered to the Catalan people a confrontational, backward-looking speech that is out of touch with what the vast majority of Catalans—who are moderate and constructive—want for the present or for the Catalonia of the future.
- Mr Torra is not standing as the president that the people of Catalonia need or deserve. He refuses to govern on behalf of all of them, or to connect with what Catalan society currently demands.
- Catalan society deserves to recover its former state of normality and calm, and to be allowed to heal the social rift which the candidate’s words seek to deepen. He has once again settled into a sectarian and divisive narrative, refusing to govern on behalf of the Catalan people as a whole, and fueling the tensions that have done so much harm to Catalonia, to its social cohesion and its economic development.
- The manner and conditions under which Mr Torra’s candidacy was proposed, and the speech with which he presented it, demonstrate a lack of respect for Catalan institutions, for the regional parliament of which he is a member, and for the regional government he seeks to lead. In the light of the values and practices of our democracy, his candidacy and his speech reveal a certain autocracy, entirely out of place in the 21st century, which puts the personal interests of an individual before the common interests of all citizens. For it is autocratic and exclusive to put one’s own political ends and personal priorities before the common good.
- It should not be forgotten, moreover, that the party for which he is standing did not win the elections, nor do those who intend to vote for him represent the majority of the Catalan people. He should at least have had the humility not to speak on behalf of them all.
- Mr Torra’s speech bears out the scant interest in or capacity for dialogue of those parties that deny a voice to the Catalan people as a whole and refuse any understanding with the rest of the Spanish people. He has demonstrated that he has no interest in building a dialogue within the Catalan Parlament itself, nor in society as a whole, nor with anyone who does not submit entirely to his point of view.
- The same democracy that champions the freedom of expression of each and every citizen to defend their ideas also prevents such ideas from being imposed on others through unlawful acts.
- The people of Spain know that those of us who value and respect our constitutional values have adopted all the measures necessary to maintain social harmony. The announced constituent process and the declaration of independence led nowhere, and their instigators achieved nothing more than having to assume the consequences of their actions. The pro-independence parties know that they have no possibility of attaining their secessionist goals.
- In view of the candidate’s speech, and in defence of the legality of Catalonia and of the rights of all Catalans and of the Spanish people as a whole, the Spanish Government shall be keeping a very close eye on the actions of the candidate and of his possible Government. Any illegality shall be redressed and any violation of our constitutional framework shall be met with consequences.