Three of the Catalan ministers in Belgian exile, Lluís Puig, Clara Ponsatí and Meritxell Serret, are to renounce their positions as deputies in the new Catalan parliament. This move has been announced in a tweet by Lluís Puig on Sunday, and the declared objective is to guarantee a parliamentary majority on Tuesday for the investiture of Carles Puigdemont as Catalan president.
Sempre he dit que sabíem com sumar 68 a la sessió d' investidura del MHP @KRLS , demà presento la meva renúncia a Diputat, conscient que amb @ClaraPonsati i @MeritxellSerret fem un acte de dignitat pel nostre país. @JuntsXCat i @Esquerra_ERC ho saben gestionar— Lluís Puig i Gordi (@PuigGordi) 28 January 2018
Translation: I have always said that we knew how to reach a total of 68 MPs in the presidential investiture session for Carles Puigdemont. Tomorrow I will renounce my position as a deputy, aware that along with Clara Ponsatí and Meritxell Serrat, we will be carrying out an act of dignity for our country. JuntsxCat and ERC know how to manage the situation.
Puig and Ponsatí will give up the places in parliament they obtained in the list of JuntsxCat (Together for Catalonia), and sources in this electoral group have confirmed that this action "responds to the need to ensure a pro-independence parliamentary majority". "Under no circumstances is this an abandonment of the JuntsxCat project, nor is it a withdrawal from political activism". The places of the two representatives will be taken by Sawla El Garbhi, on the Barcelona list, and Ferran Roquer, on the Girona list. Serret is part of the ERC (Catalan Republican Left) list, and will be replaced by another candidate from that list.
With these moves, the pro-independence parties will guarantee the 68 seats required for an absolute majority in the Catalan parliament, since the deputies in prison - Oriol Junqueras and Jordi Sànchez - will be able to delegate their votes. The other two Catalan leaders in exile, Carles Puigdemont and Antoni Comín, will maintain their positions as MPs-elect.