The PP in Cantoria have announced the inclusion of Maura Hillen (president of AUAN) as an independent candidate on the electoral list of this party for the municipal elections in May of this year.

This is without doubt a change, given that in the last municipal elections Maura Hillen stood as an independent on the list of the PSOE in Albox, becoming a councillor in this Town Hall, until she resigned in June last year. At the time of her resignation she explained that she was grateful to the PSOE for all the steps that they had taken, but she felt obliged to resign because she considered that this party had stopped taking the extra steps necessary to resolve the problem of irregular houses in the most complete way possible.

She announced her decision on 31st May 2018 after a plenum of the Diputación of Almeria . In this plenum the PP presented a motion in favour of regularising more houses and allowing access to basic services and paperwork for humanitarian reasons. The motion was approved with the votes of the PP and Ciudadanos but the PSOE abstained.

After this abstention Mrs Hillen stated that “I have come to the conclusion that the political will of the PSOE regarding the need for change is not evident at this time”, adding that “The planning laws are not written in stone and it is easy to resolve these problems once and for all: all that is needed is political will as shown by the PP when they presented this motion”. However, she resigned with friendly words for the PSOE, recalling that which had been achieved for purchasers in good faith until that point in time.

Recently the support of the PP for the cause of regularising illegal houses has been evident, with the Partido Popular presenting an amendment in the Parliament of Andalusia towards the end of last year to allow more houses to access basic services and escritura, for humanitarian reasons, something that those affected have been demanding for many years.

The amendment was again approved by Ciudadanos but was defeated by the combined votes of the PSOE, Izquierda Unida and Podemos. After the change in government in the Junta de Andalucia,  placing the Ministry of Development, Infrastructure and Territorial Planning in the hands of the PP, this willingness to solve the problem has received a new impetus as evidenced by the recent statements of the Minister, Marifrán Carazo, who, to the delight of tens of thousands of those affected who will benefit from these measures, at last promised significant changes in a short period of time.

Mrs Hillen explains that “it is evident that a new philosophy exists in the Andalusian government. One that recognises the urgent need to resolve the grave problem of the 300,000 irregular houses in Andalusia. The PP has promised to do this and it is that party that has most supported those affected recently, and I am certain that they will do everything possible to put an end to this terrible scourge in  Andalusia”.

Asked why she was standing in Cantoria she stated that she wants to contribute her efforts to improving coexistence and the well being of all residents in this town where she feels comfortable, and not only among the British.

She says that she believes that there is work to be done and states that she supports working for the future of this municipality in a constructive, calm and collaborative manner, working for progress in the municipality because people deserve that their politicians should concentrate on resolving their problems instead of spending so much energy fighting among themselves.