By Tim Fanning

THE Balearic opposition Partido Popular party's 12th Balearic convention gets underway in Palma's exhibition centre today with all eyes on Rosa Estaras, the current President of the party in the Balearics, who is looking to be re-elected, and the candidate who is opposing her, the current Mayor of Calvia, Carlos Delgado.

The build-up to the convention has been marked by recrimination in the party after Delgado tried to have the convention suspended in the courts alleging that the organising committee adopted an “irregular” process in the drawing up of the final list of delegates who will be able to vote in the election of the new president.

It is expected that Estaras will be easily re-elected by the majority of the convention delegates.
But her problems won't end there as Delgado has said that the conservative PP party will not be able to win autonomous elections in the Balearics without the support of his wing of the party.

The PP lost control of the autonomous Government, the Council of Majorca and some of the main municipal councils on the island, including that of Palma during last year's regional and local elections.

In total, 1'802 delegates will be entitled to vote in the election of the regional party's new President.
The convention is the first to be held since the resignation of the former leader of the PP in the Balearics, Jaume Matas.
The president of the organising committee, Francesc Fiol, said that 250 guests, 70 journalists from 25 media organisations, and about 140 volunteers were expected to attend, on top of the 1'802 delegates.

It's the largest ever number of delegates for a convention in the Balearics.
The slogan for the conference is “With you, we all win”.
The PP has spent 200'000 euros on the organisation of the convention, which takes place at the new exhibition centre at the airport in Palma.
Delegates to today's convention will also get the chance to hear the leaders of the national organisation, fresh from the national convention that was held recently in Valencia.

The new Secretary General of the PP, Maria Dolores Cospedal, will address the convention before the voting.
The President of the national party, Mariano Rajoy, as well as the General Area Vice-Secretary, Javier Arenas, and the Vice-Secretary of Organisation, Ana Mato will attend the official closure of the convention.


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