Francina Armengol is sworn in as president of the Balearic Islands

Armengol will form a leftist coalition government • This development brings to a close a previous term marked by reiterated attacks on education, the Catalan language, and culture

VilaWeb
Montserrat Serra
01.07.2015 - 16:55
Actualització: 13.06.2022 - 09:54

The socialist Francina Armengol has been sworn in as president of the Balearic Island government after securing the votes of the Socialist Party of the Balearic Islands, Més, Podemos, and Gent per Formentera. The three representatives from Proposta per les Illes abstained from the vote, and the twenty-two from Partido Popular voted against her.

Armengol’s election brings to an end an ominous period of Partido Popular rule under the leadership of José Ramón Bauzá, marked by repeated attacks on education, culture and the Catalan language.

Among the more controversial measures advanced by the Partido Popular, which governed with an absolute majority, was the passing of a law, known as Integrated Language Treatment (TIL), whose aim was to promote trilingual education in the public school system. The measure, regarded as very controversial because it curtails the use of Catalan in the classroom, was met with mass demonstrations and a teacher strike.

In her inaugural address, Armengol announced that her government would move swiftly to repeal the so-called symbols law (which bans the flying of the Catalan flag from public buildings), as well as the TIL. She also announced an emergency plan to fight poverty.

Armengol said that she felt a great sense of responsibility because she ‘owed a debt to the many women and men who have fought for democracy, equality, self-rule, and freedom’.

Born in Inca, Mallorca, Armengol, 43, is the first woman president of the Balearic Islands. The new government—a coalition formed by the Socialist Party of the Balearic Islands and the eco-nationalist party Més—will announce its choice of ministers over the coming days.

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