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In a considerably shorter monthly meeting than normal, lasting just three hours, the Orihuela council has shown that they are capable of working together for the good of society, by unanimously approving a motion to protect and support those affected by the financial crisis, in particular in support of the Plataforma de Afectados por la Hipoteca.

All councillors approved the vote, including the ruling government, the opposition and councillors unassigned, in a motion tabled by the Partido Popular. Many consider it an unusual move that the PP should have brought such a notion as it is considered that it is their national political group that have caused the problems for many of those facing eviction. The second surprise was that a similar motion had already been tabled some months ago by the councillor for social welfare, Emilio Zaplana, with was rejected by the majority vote of the Partido Popular.

Some members of the Pah group voiced their objections to the fact it was the PP who had tabled the plan, considering the fact that they had refused to help in the past, with the overall opinion being that the PP are now using the situation as a “weapon” in the battle with the bipartite government.

Never the less, irrespective of the political ball throwing, this is a positive move for the people of Orihuela, which will ensure the right to housing, rather than eviction, and see the creation of a municipal fund for social housing for those affected by evictions, as well as online social support to offset the payment of basic supplies such as water, electricity or gas.

Orihuela has numerous blocks of properties which were built by the Partido Popular government of Valencia, which still remain vacant to this day, despite the number of people who have faced eviction as a result of the financial crisis.

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