Not an hour has passed the plenary session of the Ceuta Assembly until Vox has again caused its suspension after accusing two deputies of “pro-Moroccan”, for the mere fact of being Muslim. The accusation has caused a tense and bitter debate that has led the president of the autonomous city, Juan Jesús Vivas (PP), to cancel both the session that was to be held this Monday and the one that was scheduled for Tuesday. After making the decision, Vivas has even shown its willingness “to resign”, if it is an obstacle to resuming the order of the Assembly. These two new suspensions are added to the one that already occurred on May 27 when the far-right party burst another plenary session due to the same accusations, although on that occasion the session was resumed later.
The verbal confrontation occurred just when the deputies were immersed in the debate of a proposal presented by Vox in favor of the parental pin. The spokesman in Ceuta for the far-right party, Carlos Verdejo, addressed Fátima Hamed, leader of the Movement for Dignity and Citizenship (MDYC) to accuse: “Our coexistence is broken since you and the pro-Moroccans are in this Assembly.” Despite the interventions of Vivas and Hamed to condemn the words, Verdejo has reaffirmed himself in his attack in a subsequent intervention, and the president has ended up suspending the session. The cancellation has been made final after an extraordinary meeting of spokespersons in which the PP, PSOE and Caballas Coalition have voted in favor of this measure, and only MDYC has preferred to continue with the meeting.
Verdejo has accused both Hamed, Caballas and members of the PP of being “pro-Moroccan.” “They want this city to resemble a Moroccan province”, he has come to assert, in an argument very similar to the previous session that also burst on May 27. “All the members of this Assembly are and we feel Spanish,” Vivas replied. Hamed has been more emphatic: “Ridiculous and hick is to question the nationality of people because of their religious confession, is that what you want the parental pin for? (…). I am not his model of being Spanish. The Muslims you like are the ones who clean your shit or the ones who do jobs for you without registering. But slavery is over ”.
“Tension and tension”
Given the climate of “tension and tension” generated, as defined shortly after by the Assembly table, Vivas has opted for the suspension to affect both the appointment called for this Monday and tomorrow Tuesday. It will not affect the plenary session convened for Thursday in an extraordinary way. “We are doing a disservice to Ceuta and Spain and a great favor to those who intend to divide Ceuta society around the fundamental objective that in this Assembly we are all and we feel Spanish,” Vivas clarified in an appearance after the suspension of the session.
PSOE, MDYC and Caballas Coalition have agreed that the Vox representatives’ strategy is based on “bursting” the plenary sessions, according to statements made after the suspension to local media. However, the far-right party has denied the accusation and have accused Vivas of a “caciquil gesture” for the cancellation and of a “excessive” reaction to what they consider a mere exposition of their argument.
It is not the first time that Verdejo uses the adjective of pro-Moroccan to refer to Ceuta deputies of Muslim confession. They already did so in the previous session of the Assembly on May 27, held just 10 days after between 8,000 and 9,000 Moroccans swam in, given the lack of control by Moroccan border agents. On that occasion, his words led some councilors to respond, exalted, to the cry of “scoundrel” and “fascist.” On that occasion, the plenary session could be resumed shortly after.
However, this Monday Vivas and the rest of the groups that have supported him have opted for the cancellation to be final. The idea of the popular is to open a period of “reflection” between the parties to bring the sessions back to normal. “In this period of reflection, everything fits (…). If it is a question of me assuming that I am not capable of maintaining order and I have to take a step aside so that in this Assembly the unity of all in the defense of our Spanishness is defended and protected, I am willing to take that step side ”, Vivas assured.