The newly elected members of the Andalusian parliament were sworn in on Thursday at the start of a term of office marked by change. Following the regional elections on 2 December, for the first time since 1982 right wing groups hold a majority and have the chance to take control of the Junta de Andalucía from the PSOE. Since then the right-wing Partido Popular (26 seats) and centre-right Ciudadanos (21) have been negotiating their coalition pact, which had inevitably to involve far-right newcomers Vox, who hold 12 seats.
The deal was confirmed on Wednesday and regional PP leader, Malaga-born Juanma Moreno, is set to become the first non-Socialist president of the Junta next month.
The PP and Cs, led in Andalucía by Juan Marín, will share control of the Junta according to an agreement that includes 90 measures regarding the new government's policies.
Before Moreno can be elected however, the new regional MPs had to be sworn in as the parliament was set up on Thursday.
One of the day's main jobs was to elect the members of the Mesa del Parlamento, the legal institution that presides over the parliament, formed by a president (or speaker), vice-presidents and secretaries.
The make-up of this group was a vital part of the negotiations, which resulted in a Cs MP, Marta Bosquet, being put forward and voted in as president. She gained the 59 votes (PP, Cs and Vox) ahead of the only other candidate, Inmaculada Nieto of the left-wing group Adelante Andalucía, who gained the support of the 50 members from her group and the PSOE, who put up no candidate.
The Mesa was completed by three vice-presidents, Esperanza Oña (PP) Teresa Jiménez (PSOE) and Julio Díaz (Cs); and three secretaries, Verónica Pérez (PSOE), Manuel Andrés González(PP) and Manuel Gavira (Vox).
It is the presence of the Vox member on this committee that was part of the deal through which the far-right group has promised its support for Juanma Moreno, whose investiture is expected to take place on 16 January.
For their plan to go ahead it was vital for the right-wing groups to gain control of the Mesa in order to prevent PSOE leader and acting Junta president Susana Díaz from standing as candidate in a apparently pointless bid to retain her job.
In theory, as the leader of the party with the most votes (the PSOE gained 33 seats), she has the right to try first to be elected as president, even though the new coalition pact guarantees her failure. However, the final decision as to whether she can stand is with the parliamentary presidency, now in the hands of Cs.