From assuring yesterday that “they are daring and groundbreaking names and we will have to get acquainted” to being forced to admit today that they will make “another proposal that is understood by the citizens.” The mayors of Don Benito (José Luis Quintana) and Villanueva de la Serena (Miguel Ángel Gallardo) have appeared this Thursday after the controversy created in public opinion after knowing the two finalist names chosen by a committee of experts created for the occasion, that he had selected ‘Mestas del Guadiana’ and ‘Concordia’ so that later the councilors of both town councils in the course of a municipal plenary session will vote on what they consider the best option.
However, both aldermen have admitted that these terms have not achieved the appropriate consensus among the neighbors: “The names have generated a generalized feeling of rejection; the reality is on the street, neither in Don Benito nor in Villanueva have those names been understood », highlighted Gallardo, who also underlined that when they decided to make it a commission of experts they were wrong: “We have put in the spotlight a group of people who have done a great job and what was asked of them, which was to give two perfectly studied names.
In this way, they have confirmed that “the two names are rejected” and the spokespersons (of the political groups) will meet and will not rise “until an agreement is reached.”
The experts -presented in their day as personalities from different fields related to teaching, philology, history or research, among others- had proposed these two options as demonyms: mestenses or mestanos and mestanas, in the case of Mestas del Guadiana; and agree on that of Concordia del Guadiana.
“We cannot turn a deaf ear to a reality that is on the street,” said Miguel Ángel Gallardo, who has indicated that “neither in Don Benito nor in Villanueva de la Serena have those names been understood”, so those denominations ” They can’t go on.” And he has acknowledged that “the proposal failed.” “We are responsible, but we learn from mistakes, we have to give the option to another methodology that restores hope” to citizens, he added.
Faced with this situation, from now on, the municipalities of Don Benito and Villanueva de la Serena are “going to continue working until they find sufficient support” for a name “that is backed by the citizens”, which “has been one of the principles principles of this process: “We are going to work to achieve an agreement between all the political groups. A proposal will be made that is endorsed by all”, the mayor of Villanueva de la Serena has promised.
In this way, both mayors have announced that the Boards of Spokespersons of both consistories will meet shortly – the date is yet to be decided – to address a new procedure for choosing names.
It must be remembered that this rectification comes after both mayors were escorted by police officers on their way out of the appearance in the plenary hall of the Dombenite town hall after announcing the two proposals for the name of the new city. Around a hundred people opposed to the merger verbally rebuked them and managed to reach the official car thanks to the work of the municipal agents.
On the other hand, the Siempre Don Benito platform, a group opposed to the merger process between the localities, had expressed its rejection of the two proposals for the name of the new city. From his point of view, the proposed names of Concordia del Guadiana and Mestas del Guadiana “erase with a stroke of the pen and without hesitation” the name that has always been linked to “our identity”. In his opinion, this change, which will no longer be carried out in these terms, was going to produce “indisputable and difficult to quantify damage.”
This group considers that the new name should have been made known to the population first during the information campaign prior to the popular consultation held on February 20. However, they assure in a statement, three months later the verdict of the expert committee has been announced, which has given two names that “are only one more step in the shameful journey of this ridiculous merger process”, which they call ” biased” and “propagandist”.
In addition, they have announced that they are working to “stop this process due to its lack of guarantees and transparency”, which is why they have filed an administrative dispute with the Justice and have called a protest for this Saturday in the Plaza de España de Don Benito at 12:30 p.m.
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