ANC to push for “maximum pro-independence unity” slate if Spanish elections are repeated

Date: 17.03.2016

Author: Núria Orriols

Source: Ara in English


The organization’s roadmap proposes a meeting “in upcoming months” of an assembly of elected officials in an “act of affirmation of national sovereignty”. It also prioritizes re-establishing the Table of Political and Social Forces for independence to “coordinate” the process

The Catalan National Assembly (ANC) is drafting a road map towards independence, a milestone forecast for 2017. This proposal, which must be approved by its general assembly in April, and which ARA has had access to, defines the role that the organization must play in upcoming months. It is a proposed roadmap drawn up by the National Secretariat that the territorial and sectorial groups can amend.

The ANC sketches various scenarios, one of which is the possibility of repeating the Spanish elections and the central government offering Catalonia an independence referendum.

Pro-independence slate

Because of the impossibility –as it stands now– of electing a new Spanish president, the ANC foresees the repetition of elections in Spain. In this context, it will attempt to push for the creation of a “slate with maximum pro-independence unity” to achieve a “significant influence” in Madrid’s Congress. The organization believes that after the experience of the 20-D elections “it is more necessary than ever” to increase the presence of “pro-independence Catalanism” in Madrid to set conditions for the governability of Spain. However, it also foresees, at the same time, moving forward with the independence process in Catalonia.

Similarly, it also notes that if Madird respects the right to self-determination and “commits to holding, in the near-term, a binding referendum” in Catalonia, “an agreement will be necessary”. The ANC sets the conditions that this consultation would have to meet: “The referendum must be held only in Catalonia, have a decisive character, respect basic democratic conditions, have a clear question with a binary response, have balanced propaganda, not change the voter register, allow Catalans living abroad to vote, and involve international observers”.

Meeting of elected officials

One of the actions already proposed in the previous roadmap, and which is also included in the agreement between Junts pel Sí and the CUP for this term, is the creation of an Assembly of Elected Officials (AdCE), which would bring together all of the Catalan representatives elected in the most recent municipal, European, Spanish, and Catalan elections. This assembly would be expected to take over, should the Spanish State suspend Catalonia’s devolved powers. “The AdCE would have to be prepared if an institutional vacuum occurs so as to give democratic legitimacy and continuity to the independence process”, says the proposed roadmap.

The first taste of this unity is the re-establishment of the Table of Political and Social Forces for a new state, which is made up of all the pro-independence parties and organizations. It met repeatedly during the previous term –it also included ICV and EUiA, who oppose outright independence—, and now the ANC wants to blow new life into it in order to broaden the support base of independence by appealing to Ada Colau’s group and the constituent process. In fact, the ANC wants this table of parties to become a stepping stone for the launch of the assembly of elected officials, where the maximum number of political forces should be represented.

With this in mind, the organization foresees that the deputies and municipal representatives that “must comprise” this assembly meet “in the next few months” in an “act of affirmation of national sovereignty of high symbolic value”.

Weaving alliances with the forces for the right to self-determination: the constituent process

One of the priorities set out by the ANC for the next year is to broaden the pro-independence base. “The social majority is a priority for our organization”, says the roadmap. To do so, it establishes various approaches: to set policies for healthcare, labor, education, culture, economy, and international relations that respond to the needs of Catalan society; to have a public debate on the basic features of a new republican constitution; and to weave alliances with the political forces in favor of the right to self-determination with trade unions and business and social organizations.

To this end, the ANC expects to become a “driving force” of the constituent process. The organization “will actively participate” in the “platform for outreach and coordination of the debate” that it is exploring between the grassroots independence movement and the organizations in favor of the constituent process. This would be a discussion on the new country that the ANC wants to keep “participative, open, transparent, and inclusive for all citizens”. It draws inspiration from the Congress of Catalan Culture held in the 1970s, which launched a process of participation and citizen debate throughout Catalonia and the Catalan Countries.

What role must the ANC play in this debate?

The proposed roadmap calls for the territorial assemblies of the organization, in collaboration with other territorial associations, to “jointly” create the organizing committees for the debates, and to persuade the institutions to get involved. As to the special interest assemblies, their job will be to promote platforms within their professional areas, for example healthcare, education, law, etc.

The steps towards an independent state

The last section of the roadmap lays out the course agreed to by Junts pel Sí and the CUP in this term. It predicts that the Parliament will proclaim independence in 2017 and ,immediately thereafter, approve the disconnection laws that are being drafted in the Catalan chamber. This would be immediately followed by the calling of constituent elections, the results of which will set the configuration of forces to draft a Catalan Constitution. The ratification of this new Constitution in a referendum would imply a “yes” vote of the citizenry to independence.

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