The Mayor of Palma, Joan Fageda, announced yesterday that he has decided that he does not intend to stand for re-election next year. After 12 years in office, Fageda would have been fighting his fourth election, but yesterday the Balearic Partido Popular announced his decision to step down at the next election. The PP's candidate is going to be the central government delegate to the Balearics, Catalina Cirer. Chairman of the PP Balearics electoral committee, which met yesterday to discuss the candidate for mayor, Manuel Ferrer, said that Cirer will have to be approved by the national electoral committee on Thursday, but political pundits said last night that tomorrow's meeting will be a mere formality and that Cirer will be a heavy weight candidate who will increase the PP's majority in Palma. Ferrer praised the great work Fageda has carried out in the capital yesterday and expressed the party's confidence in Cirer being able to pick up where Fageda leaves off. Cirer joined the Balearic government under Gabriel Cañellas in 1993 and in 1996 was named central government delegate to the Balearics. Ferrer said that over the past nine years Cirer has not only gained a great deal of experience at all levels of regional and national government, she has also developed a very close relationship with the people of Palma and is greatly respected. Chairman of the PP in the Balearics, the former Balearic president Jaume Matas, who some believe will stand to regain his seat next year, said Cirer will be a magnificent mayor and will continue the great work of Fageda.
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