TRANSLATION of the editorial which appeared yesterday in our stablemate Ultima Hora following the announcement that the Catalan Socialist Party would form a coalition with the radical Republic League of Cataluña to govern the province whose capital is Barcelona. ALTHOUGH it has taken a lot of effort, it seems that there is now a pact to rule Cataluña and it will not be a nationalist one, as had been initially expected. It is the left-wing option which has succeeded, with a tripartite government in which the PSC (Catalan Socialist Party), the ERC (Republican Left of Catalonia) and the IC will take part. Pascual Maragall will be chief minister and Carod Rovira first minister. With the electoral results known -the PSC was the most voted party although it has fewer seats that the nationalist CiU (Convergence and Union) - the variables were open, although perhaps the possibility of a change in trend was strongly indicated after 23 years of (Jordi) Pujol (the former nationalist leader of Cataluña who has now retired). Even though it is only for political “hygiene,” alternating should be welcomed. However, the triumph of the left, which opens a period of notable changes in Catalan politics, will not have been welcomed in some factions of Spanish socialism, which does not look kindly on sharing with those who favour independence. There can be no doubt that over the next few days there will be long talks on the repercussions that the Catalan pact will have for the PSOE (Spanish Socialist Workers Party) regarding its expectations for the general elections. At the moment, the only sure thing is that Catalonia is preparing to face up to a radical change which will put those who have ruled the region for nearly a quarter of the century in opposition.


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