Transparency? Not in Spain, thanks

Two recent events in Spain sadly prove that Spain has a long way to go before incorporating transparency in politics and business life.

In the on-going trial of a group of suspects of the March 11th train bombings in Madrid, the former director general of the Spanish police (and current MP of Spain’s Popular Party in the E.U. parliament), Agustín Díaz de Mera, gave testimony for a statement he made in a radio interview. He claimed to know of documents linking ETA to the March 11th train bombings. However, he refused to reveal his sources.

His claims, if true, are very important to investigate further, and for this reason he must reveal his sources. Sadly, his refusal to do so only help to suspect he is merely lying and that such documents may not even exist. In the interest of the investigation, he should bring transparency to his own statements.

The second incident is related to a soap-opera style financial-political operation in Spain starred by several energy companies aiming to acquire Spanish leader Endesa. The president of the Spanish securities and exchange commission (CNMV), Manuel Conthe, is resigning following the final episode of the soap opera.

He has requested to appear before congress to explain and present his resignation. All political groups in congress have agreed, save the socialist party in Government. The Government has even called Mr. Conthe‘s intentions “outrageous blackmailing”. Blackmailing? Why? What does the Government have to hide or to fear from Mr. Conthe‘s presentation before congress?

It smells like yet another instance of the Government of Mr. Rodríguez Zapatero hiding its obscure dealings. On this occasion, its dealings in the purchase of Endesa by other companies (both national and foreign). Blocking the appearance of Conthe before congress shows how transparency is, once more, lacking.

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