Tuesday, February 27

The Electoral Board orders to withdraw the seat of the CUP deputy convicted despite the rejection of the Parliament

The Central Electoral Board has unanimously agreed this Thursday to order the removal of the seat to Pau Juvillà, deputy of the CUP and third secretary of the Bureau of the Parliament of Catalonia. Juvillà had been sentenced by the Superior Court of Justice of Catalonia to six months of disqualification from public office for a crime of disobedience, in a sentence made public last December and which is not yet final. The JEC now considers that the list should run and the candidate who preceded Juvillà for Lleida, in this case Nogay Ndiaye, should enter the Chamber.

Less than a month after the sentence was handed down, the electoral body has decided to ignore the allegations of the Parliament’s lawyers and execute the withdrawal of Juvillà’s credentials. To do so, the Electoral Board is based on the same doctrine with which Quim Torra’s seat was already withdrawn before his conviction was final, alleging that the conviction is a cause of supervening ineligibility contemplated in article 6.2 of the Electoral Law (LOREG).

It will be the Table of the Parlament that will have to decide now if it executes the withdrawal of the seat or neglects the Electoral Board. The plenary session of the Parlament approved that Juvillà maintain the seat while the sentence is not final through an opinion of the commission of the statute of the deputy with the support of the PSC, ERC, Junts, the CUP and the ‘comuns’ and the rejection of Vox, Ciudadanos and PP. “There is no reason for incompatibility with Juvillà or any other circumstance that affects his status as a deputy of the Parliament,” read the text.

Despite the similarities with the Quim Torra case, the Electoral Board has now acted slightly differently. Instead of declaring the seat of Juvillà directly vacant, as it did with the case of the former president, after the conviction in the first instance of the CUP deputy, the Electoral Board asked the president of the Parliament, Laura Borràs, to justify the decision of the Chamber not to remove the seat from the third secretary of the Board until the Supreme Court confirmed the six-month disqualification sentence for ignoring the order to remove four yellow ties.

In the allegations presented before the JEC, the Parliament’s lawyers argued that the third secretary of the Board does not have any cause of incompatibility nor does he present any situation included in the regulations of the Chamber that would modify his condition as deputy or force him to leave the seat.

Juvillà’s criminal sentence is not final, the lawyers recalled, since the deputy can appeal to the Supreme Court. “It is, therefore, a criminal conviction that can still be reviewed in court and the filing of the appeal determines that the penalty of disqualification cannot yet be made effective,” the lawyers argued.