STAFF REPORTER PALMA

SPAIN'S Defence Minister, Carmen Chacon visiting Palma yesterday, officially presented Mayor Aina Calvo as the Socialist candidate for the city's next mayorial elections to be held in May. “She's a woman of substance who has promoted the human side of Palma,” said Chacon, who was accompanied at the Germans Escales sports stadium by Balearic President Francesc Antich and the President of the Council of Majorca Francina Armengol.

The Minister praised the Socialist coalition in power in the Islands and said that it was thanks to their “valiant efforts” that the Balearic Islands were emerging from the economic crisis “sooner than anybody else.” Referring specifically to Calvo, Chacon said that the Mayor had not gone into politics to “be somebody” but rather to “do something.” The Minister said that the two most important qualities for a politician are to be honest and to make sure their finances are in order. She claimed that Calvo was a person who had managed to achieve both. “I'm proud to be her friend and count on her returning as Mayor of Palma after the forthcoming local elections,” praised Chacon.Assessing her four years in power at the assembly yesterday, Calvo said that it certainly hadn't been an easy time but she considered it “very well worth while.” Calvo claimed that the Socialist coalition in City Hall had tackled some of Palma's historic problems during her term of office, including the interminable flood drainage difficulties at La Vileta.

Calvo said that due to the joint efforts of her team, Palma is now a more modern, more attractive, a fairer and more sustainable city in which to live and that she looks forward to continuing her work.

Speaking of the Opposition on the City Council, the Mayor said that: “They insult us, threaten us and try to humiliate us but they still don't seem to understand that we have nothing to hide. We are simply acting in the interests of the people who live in Palma.” President Antich claimed that the difference between the Socialists and the Opposition parties, including the Partido Popular, is that his own ruling team was completely united and that the opposition were wasting time squabbling amongst themselves. He pointed to the recent breakaway tactics of former Majorcan Unionist MP Jaume Font who has now formed his own party.