The mayor of Caldes de Malavella, Salvador Balliu, tried last Easter to try to evict some squatters who settled in a home they owned, located in an urbanization of the municipality. He wanted to expel them by brandishing an ax and even making a move to attack when he realized that they had taken out a mobile phone to record him. In that sequence, which has spread like wildfire through the town, Balliu is heard repeating to the squatters “At two!” -supposedly to indicate the deadline they had to leave their property- and also to hide that he is the owner of the house: “They have paid me to kick you out & rdquor ;, he lets them go.
In the video one of the squatters can be seen, sitting in front of him, on the ground. And you hear another, the one who records, who asks him to stop. The reaction of Balliu, who is also the ‘president’ of the Consell Comarcal de La Selva -governs both in the consistory and in the council with the support of the PSC-, has stunned the opposition, which calls for his resignation. And he has agreed on this text: “We believe that the mayor’s actions are inadmissible, no one can take justice into their own hands, much less being a public official, this afternoon the groups that exercise the opposition in the City Council (SomCaldes, ERC and En Comú Podem) will meet to discuss the actions to be undertaken. We believe that there is no possible justification and that Mr Balliu must resign immediately. We cannot understand that Junts has not clearly positioned itself against this action and we regret having learned of such serious events through social networks.”
Caldes has, like other towns in the area, problems with occupations. Above all, in its urbanizations. Balliu had been combative against the proliferation of marijuana plantations, which are hidden behind some of these occupations. And in the population he promoted a protocol, not without controversy, to act against them. A protocol that now, underlines the opposition, has been skipped when one of his properties has been affected.
The mayor’s version
In statements to this newspaper, Balliu explained that he learned of the occupation by the municipal police while he was away on a trip. That when he returned, on the 17th, he went in the company of the agents and saw the property empty but found that the locks had been changed. “I returned on Monday the 18th alone, with padlocks to close the house, believing that there was no one & rdquor ;, he assures. “But a woman came out with a large dog and then two young men with sticks & rdquor ;, he continues. “I got scared and went to the van where I have field tools and took the axe. I acted badly but it was because I acted hot & rdquor ;, he admits.
Balliu has summoned the spokespersons of the rest of the parties tomorrow to explain what happened.
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