POLITICS

Andalusian leftists vote to enter coalition government with Socialists

United Left leaders offer to share full responsibility for administration in southern region

United Left (IU) party members have voted overwhelmingly in favor of forming a government with the Socialists (PSOE) in Andalusia.

In an internal referendum on Tuesday to decide whether the group of leftist parties should form a coalition or enter a parliamentary pact with the PSOE, 82.4 percent backed the former option, the general coordinator for IU in the region, Diego Valderas, announced alongside IU organization secretary José Luis Pérez Tapias.

In an interview with Canal Sur radio, Valderas on Wednesday said he hoped the IU would be able to have “around a 30 percent” representation in the future Andalusian coalition government. He added that he wanted a “shared responsibility” with the Socialists and not an arrangement of “watertight compartments,” which he said “did not work on previous occasions” such as the Socialist-Andalusian Party coalition of 1996 to 2004.

Valderas said the IU would on Thursday restart negotiations with the Socialists over the makeup of the future Andalusia regional government and hoped it would be resolved by the beginning of May.

Socialist regional secretary Susana Díaz expressed her satisfaction with the outcome of the vote, saying she wanted the negotiations to result in a “single government with a single program” that is “stable, strong and responsible.”

Socialist regional premier José Antonio Griñán, who is the head of the caretaker government, is due to be sworn in again as Andalusia chief for another term next week with votes from the PSOE and IU.

Following the March 25 elections, the incumbent Socialists and the IU shared 59 seats while the Popular Party took 50 seats.

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