This Saturday pro-independence local governments will show their commitment to the referendum. The participating mayors will vow to provide their towns’ usual polling stations for the 1 October independence vote, according to the manifesto that ARA has had access to. The document includes three firm promises by the town councils. The first is the provision of municipal spaces, but it also includes support for the independence process driven by the Catalan government and parliament and the conviction that the councils won’t back down despite the "political and legal hurdles” that the Spanish state might create.
The University of Barcelona’s main auditorium will be the stage for the mayors and local elected officials to exhibit their support for the vote planned for the coming 1 October. Sources within town councils have told this newspaper that the attendees will sign the manifesto in a style akin to the ceremony held by the Catalan government last April when the president, ministers and high-ranking officials signed a written commitment to call the referendum.
"Our predisposition and commitment to collaborate with all the acts the Catalan government requires of us means that, when the referendum is formally called, we will put at the disposition of the organisation of the referendum the usual locations where election contests are held in our districts". This is the explicit reference found in the document that will be read at the University of Barcelona this Saturday.
In the manifesto, the local councils underline their own importance as intermediaries for the demands of the public, as they are closest to the people. "If today there is a claim that creates a consensus within Catalonia, it’s none other than for the holding of a referendum to freely decide the future of our nation". “Needless to say, local representatives will once again stand with their citizens and the other Catalan institutions to realise the desire expressed civically, politically and democratically by the immense majority of Catalan society", they insist.
This Saturday’s event will act as the prelude for next Tuesday, 4 July, when the Catalan government will offer the details of the organisation of the referendum in an event held by the Junts pel Sí governing coalition at Barcelona’s Teatre Nacional de Catalunya.