President Puigdemont has appointed Jordi Turull as Minister of the Presidency, Joaquim Forn as Minister of Home Affairs and Clara Ponsatí as Minister of Education in order to galvanise the Government’s full commitment to holding the referendum on October 1.
Over the last two days, Carles Puigdemont has met with members of the Catalan Government to ascertain the willingness in the Executive Council to continue with the legislature’s roadmap and hold a binding referendum regardless of the Spanish government’s threats.
Instead of engaging constructively with the Catalan secessionist movement, the Rajoy Administration has met the Government’s demands with neglect and intimidation. After threatening to suspend Catalonia’s autonomy, bringing elected representatives to trial and even banning the former President from holding office, the Spanish state government has intensified its aggression by affirming that it would prosecute civil servants, companies and Catalan ministers if they continue to prepare the referendum.
This intensification calls for a renewed commitment within the Executive Council to fulfil its democratic mandate. Accordingly, the President has accepted the resignation of Neus Munté, Jordi Jané and Mertixell Ruiz and named Jordi Turull, Joaquim Forn and Clara Ponsatí to guarantee a vote on independence, regardless of the legal ramifications.
In press conference held this morning at the Palau de la Generalitat, the President thanked the ministers for their role in the Catalan executive and assured that there is “no doubt or hesitation that the country must decide what it wants to be through a referendum”. “On October 1, there must be ballot boxes filled with votes. This is our commitment”, the President added.
The latest changes in Government, follow last week’s appointment of Santi Vila and Lluís Puig, as Minister of Business and Knowledge and Minister of Culture, respectively. Other changes in the governmental structure include the appointment of the former Secretary for the Development of Self-government, Víctor Cullell, as Secretary of the Executive Council and the incorporation of Popular Consultations and Electoral Processes into the Ministry of the Vice-presidency and of the Economy and Finance, led by Minister Oriol Junqueras.