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Outgoing mayor, José Bernal says farewell but promises to return

José Bernal.
José Bernal. / J-L
  • "The tough journey has done nothing but strengthen my commitment to San Pedro and Marbella," says PSOE local leader

The outgoing mayor of Marbella José Bernal was praised for the dignified way in which he passed the "baton" over to Ángeles Muñoz, a process for which he said he had "the utmost respect".

In an open letter to the people of Marbella he said that he didn’t understand how OSP, his coalition partners for two years, had "handed power to the Partido Popular in exchange for nothing". In the letter he explained that "over these past two years a group of honourable councilors have returned integrity to the council administration. We have transformed whole neighbourhoods and brought down unemployment rates to pre-crisis levels, reduced the huge debt that the town hall had, improved conditions of equality for town hall workers and brought important sporting events to the municipality."

He closed by saying, "The tough journey has done nothing but strengthen my commitment to San Pedro and Marbella. We are going with the commitment to return."

During his intervention in the council meeting on Tuesday, Bernal said that being mayor of Marbella had been the proudest moment of his life.

However other PSOE politicians were less conciliatory about the transfer of power to the PP. The Socialist’s regional party secretary, Juan Conejo has claimed that there is a "dark side" to the OSP agreement with the PP to force the no confidence vote. He said that there were "too many coincidences" and situations that "were difficult to explain". "Everything indicates we are returning to dark times again in Marbella," he said, alluding to past legal scandals in the town.