The communist general secretary ended the first official day of the municipal campaign with warnings about the lack of execution of the present State Budget, on a day dedicated to the reconquest of the Alentejo municipalities lost to the PS four years ago.
At the start of the electoral campaign period, on Tuesday, Jerónimo de Sousa ‘down’ the country to Faro, for the first of several rallies that fill the CDU’s agenda until 24 September.
Before the audience present in the auditorium of Escola Secundária João de Deus, the communist leader again criticized the lack of execution of the State Budget for this year, which is why, he argued, it makes no sense to talk about the next one.
“Some people only see reality within the strict margins of the Budget [do Estado], especially of the next one, but here we want to underline that there is still one that is in force and that the Government refuses to comply in all its extension”, he maintained.
In the opinion of the secretary general of the PCP, this State Budget “allows the hiring of thousands of workers who are lacking in public services, make investments in the National Health Service (SNS) or in public schools”, or even provide “funds to support culture”.
However, “some want to flee forward”, namely the Government, when, according to the budget legislation, the State Budget for 2021 “is to be in force for 12 months”, he continued.
“Well, we are six months away from the Budget [do Estado] for 2021 is in force and the eagerness of many… ‘So now the Budget for 2022? How will it be? Do you vote for or against?’ It doesn’t exist yet… Because, in relation to what we are going to do, this is: comply with this Budget, which is in force for the 12 months that are needed and, of course, many problems are resolved immediately”, he added.
On the first official day of the CDU municipal campaign, outdoor initiatives were planned, because of the pandemic and to facilitate contact with the population, but the rain spoiled these plans.
Still, the coalition managed to fill two theaters and an auditorium. Excluding the masks and some distance, the environment was reminiscent of a period before 2020.
In the beginning of the municipal government, Jerónimo de Sousa’s efforts were concentrated on the reconquest of three of the municipalities of Beja that CDU lost to PS four years ago: Moura, Beja and Castro Verde, the latter one of the toughest defeats in 2017, as the CDU had led this municipality since the first municipal elections, in 1976.
The communist leader and the candidates charged with the task of recovering these municipalities for the sphere of the CDU made a diagnosis of four socialist years: non-existent investment, degradation of municipalities and more promises without materialization.
In Faro, the ambition is more humble. The CDU intends, through Catarina Marques, to regain a place in the council of the municipality and to prevent, in the candidate’s words, the PS and PSD from continuing to “owners and lords of the territories” and the problems “children of unknown parents”.
The Unitarian Democratic Coalition (CDU) – composed of the Portuguese Communist Party (PCP), the Ecological Party “Os Verdes” (PEV) and the Associação Intervenção Democrática – is running for 305 chambers in the municipal elections of 26 September.
Four years ago, it lost nine municipalities to the socialists and recorded the worst result in this electoral act.