Tuesday, July 5

United We Can of Badajoz describes as “medieval” the intention to declare Henar Álvarez persona non grata

The Grupo de Unidas Podemos in the Badajoz City Council has requested that the plenary session on the 27th not declare the presenter Henar Álvarez persona non grata, master of ceremonies last Saturday of the Los Palomos 2022 party and who called “homophobic” the former mayor Miguel Celdrán, now deceased.

The municipal groups must vote that day if the consistory appoints a persona non grata and files a criminal complaint against the comedian after the motion registered by the former Vox councilor (currently not attached) and member of the tripartite government team (PP and Cs), Alejandro Vélez, who has described the jokes made by the presenter about Celdrán as “in bad taste”, whom he considers to be the “driver” of Los Palomos after “a misinterpretation of a joke of his” made in 2011, according to the mayor.

United We Can has asked the mayor of Badajoz, Ignacio Gragera, not to admit this motion to debate, since “it attributes false crimes to the comic”. In addition, the purple formation has explained that the declaration of persona non grata is an “almost medieval” measure, which cannot be understood in a full democracy.

For Podemos “everything has to be framed in the context of presenting a show like Los Palomos, which is irreverent and transgressive by definition”. “Los Palomos is not only a festival for diversity and tolerance, it is also a vindication and fight for the rights of groups that have been historically discriminated against and that, as it is seen, continue to be attacked at the first chance of change”, has affirmed the municipal spokesperson, Erika Cadenas.

This group frames the words of the Madrid presenter in “the limits of humor” and as part of a freedom of expression “that must always be defended, as it is a human right, whether they like her words or not, as long as there is no insult or defamation”. In this case, she believes that there is no defamation because Celdrán’s “homophobic insult” “did occur, having to apologize for it”, in addition to the fact that the comedian “was unaware of the death” of the former mayor.

For Erika Cadenas, this motion “is just the umpteenth attack full of hate” by Alejandro Vélez “towards certain groups and people, such as the merchants of the market, the Muslim community or the victims of the dictatorship and their families”, all of this “with the approval of Ignacio Gragera”.

“In Extremadura we throw the lame pigeons elsewhere”

Henar Álvarez mentioned in his participation as master of ceremonies of the main act of Los Palomos 2022 how the people of Badajoz had created an LGTBI party based on homophobic statements by the former mayor of Badajoz in 2011, now deceased, Miguel Celdrán. Specifically, Álvarez said: “Badajoz is already my favorite place in the world. I swear to you. It freaks me out that a homophobic mayor insults you and you have ‘mounted’ a party that has lasted 11 years to screw him. The guy will be thinking: he could have already stuck his tongue up my ass”.

The former councilor of the far-right party believes that these words are an insult both to Celdrán’s memory and “to all the people of Badajoz”, so last Wednesday he presented the motion in which he asks that the screenwriter be named persona non grata and that the City Council present a criminal complaint against Álvarez “for defaming and humiliating the history of our city” and that of the mayor of the PP.

The fact is that the statements by Miguel Celdrán to which Álvarez referred last Saturday on the Alcazaba Stage occurred in 2011 during a radio interview in Cope. The journalist Ernesto Sáenz de Buruaga questioned the then mayor about his fondness for raising pigeons and asked him if there were lame pigeons among his animals. “In Extremadura few. Here we normally throw them to another side, it depends on which side they limp. Here, thank God, we are all very healthy”, was the response of the PP politician. Later he apologized for the controversy that was created.


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