surinenglish

Mijas council edges towards a mayor-swapping coalition

Flashback to the 2015 deal between Nozal (l) and Maldonado (r).
Flashback to the 2015 deal between Nozal (l) and Maldonado (r). / SUR
  • A key dilemma is deciding who would be PP mayor in a job-sharing arrangement with Juan Carlos Maldonado (Cs), who refuses to work with Ángel Nozal while he is under investigation

Mijas is one of the few town halls in Spain where there is still no mayor sworn in following May's local elections. Now it is looking more likely that the centre-right Ciudadanos party (Cs) will do a deal with the conservative Partido Popular (PP) after the national leaders of both parties gave permission for the two sides to talk to each other.

No party won an overall majority in the May election in Mijas, so parties must agree a coalition to share the council, or a deal where one party abstains to let a mayor with minority support take charge.

Juan Carlos Maldonado (Cs), with six seats on the 25-seat council is still acting as mayor as he waits to see who the new mayor will be. But he appears to have overcome his opposition to working with the PP, who won the election in Mijas with nine seats (ahead of PSOE on eight seats).

Sources said this week that the two parties are currently discussing who will get which council departments to oversee. The biggest dilemma is who will be mayor and the sides are believed to be talking about a job-sharing arrangement, where Juan Carlos Maldonado will be mayor for two years followed by a member of the PP for two years, until the end of the fixed four-year term.

The second biggest sticking point is who from the PP will be mayor after two years. Cs has refused to allow former mayor for the PP, Ángel Nozal, into the role. Maldonado broke a coalition pact with Nozal in 2016 a year after the last election, and Nozal is currently a subject of eight separate investigations linked to possible abuse of public office, offences which he denies.

The investiture of a new council in Mijas has been delayed until 5 July over a separate, internal dispute within hard-right Vox over who is their rightful single councillor.