Those wilting violets


FRANCISCO CAMPS, erstwhile Valencian Community president, emerges pristine and clutching violets every time foes and former friends push him into the doodoo.

His one court case until now centred on tailor-made suits in return for dozens of contracts irregularly awarded to companies linked to the Gurtel corruption setup headed by Francisco Correa.

He was acquitted after a jury found five-to-four in his favour in 2013, by which time he had already resigned as president.

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Camps was a close friend of Correa’s emissary in Valencia, Alvaro Perez aka El Bigotes (Whiskers), who was his Amiguito de mi alma, something approximate to a bosom friend.

Camps, with all his ex-presidential perks, has stayed out of harm’s way and remanded Perez is no longer a bosom friend.

Instead Perez spilled the beans in the national criminal court during the Partido Popular’s illegal funding case, maintaining that Camps knew what was going on.

When Camps’ turn came to give evidence he explained that the PP’s regional Secretary General Ricardo Costa dealt with economic matters. In any case, his predecessor Eduardo Zaplana sent him to El Bigotes, Camps said.

Nice one Paco! You re-washed your immaculately clean hands while implicating Zaplana, who immediately issued a communique stating that he could easily demonstrate that Camps was not telling the truth.

He also expressed surprise that his successor should have taken so many years to air his version.

Zaplana must be less surprised than he claims. There is little love lost between the two and Camps, once again in the doodoo, has killed two birds with one stone while reviving those wilting violets.

 Mind your tongue

THE Spanish are not monarchist by vocation and there are few royal groupies as there are in the UK. Nevertheless, Republicans reluctantly admitted that they were Juancarlistas during the first years of the transition to democracy and most of the country would readily agree that Felipe VI is doing his best in a thankless role.

Whether or not Esquerra Republicana’s proposal to depenalise insults to the Crown prospers, it is missing the point.

Democracy and royal families – and politicians – should be able to take it on the chin without precipitating a revolution. But nobody should publicly insult anybody else: that should be an issue of good manners, not legislation.

 No foregone conclusion

REGARDLESS of whether Brexit turns out hard or soft the Partido Popular wants British residents to have the vote in municipal elections. Very thoughtful of them, but what makes them so sure they would get their votes?

Along the Costas there are countless Brits who vote and a look at the 2015 election results makes it quite clear that not all of them voted for the Partido Popular.

Changes the day after?

MOST recent general strikes in Spain have come and gone with neither pain nor glory and were largely invisible outside the biggest cities. 

The same can’t be said for the women’s strike on March 8, calling for equal pay, equal treatment and equal rights. It was seen and heard all over Spain and in the smallest villages, too. Even Spain’s president Mariano Rajoy, who initially showed little interest or enthusiasm in the strike, saw which way the wind was blowing and finally fixed a purple ribbon to his lapel.

All very well, but what about March 9? Did anything change the next day? What about a month’s time, a year’s time? That’s when we’ll know and few women are holding their breath right now.



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