The Koldo-Gate in Spain

Legal - April 16, 2024

On 8 March, ECR Party Vice President Jorge Buxadé Villalba warned his fellow members of the European Parliament, both in the ECR Group as well as in the Identity and Democracy (ID) Group, together with their respective assistants, that a very serious case of Socialist corruption and misuse of European Union funds was unfolding in Spain.

This was further debated during the plenary session in Strasbourg on 13 March.  The VOX politician compared the criminal history of the Spanish Socialist Party (PSOE) to the genealogy of Abraham in length.

In this case, the modus operandi is rather simple:  to overprice government contracts in the procurement of sanitary equipment, that is, masks, during the Covid 19 pandemic.  In return for the goods, Mr. Sánchez’s officials would pay with fresh Union money.

And here is where the attitude of the European Commission seems awkward:  Mrs, Von der Leyen, the woman famous for covering her negotiated contracts with Pfizer, keeps silent with regards to Spain.  MEP Buxadé rightly  denounced this lack of honesty and integrity during last month’s part session.

Speaking on behalf of the Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament, neither Mr. Nicolás González Casares nor Mr. Juan Fernando López Aguilar offered an explanation, but simply accused the European Popular Party, as if they were battling in a childish playground discussion.

Back in Madrid, the Spanish police and the Anti Corruption Prosecutor’s Office are doing their job:  a 53 million euro deal is under close scrutiny.  The negotiating party, on behalf of the Socialist government, is Mr. José L. Ábalos, former Minister of Transport, and his advisor Koldo García, an unqualified testaferro of Ábalos, whom the latter brought to top positions in the current national administration.

Ábalos is no longer a part of Mr. Sánchez’s Socialist-Communist government, but he has refused to resign as a member of the national parliament.  His seat grants valuable immunity in front of judicial proceedings, unless such immunity is released by a majority vote in the legislative chamber.

As to Mr. García, whom everybody by now in Spain know as “Koldo”, his Basque first name, he is for the time being outside of jail.  He was originally imprisoned in February, but according to the Anti Corruption Prosecutor it is enough to block his passport and to have him appear regularly in front of the judge, in order to prevent his fleeing from Spain.

The scandal is not limited to these two officials in Pedro Sánchez’s administration.  Similar deals were commissioned in the Balearic Islands at the time when this region was also governed by the Spanish Socialists.  Its former President, Mrs. Francina Armengol, is currently the Chair of the Spanish lower chamber of Parliament, the third authority in the nation after King Philip and Pedro Sánchez.

She has denied charges, but the Spanish press has published that she decided to release funds for payments seven days after regional public accountants having detected the case of corruption.

Furthermore, suspicious links between Koldo and Sánchez’s wife amount to many Spaniards believing that what we so far know is only the point of the iceberg.  Mrs. Sánchez would have met with the dubious intermediary, together with a famous businessman, Mr. Javier Hidalgo, one of whose companies, the airline “Air Europa”, had been saved from bankruptcy by the left wing government.

As a consequence, the Koldo-gate is progressively becoming a Sánchez-gate.  So far, the Spanish president is defending by attack, calling the opposition as corrupt as he might as well be seen.  VOX remains out of this piece of mud, but in return it is rewarded with silence on behalf of the public media.  To what extent this atmosphere of mismanagement of public interest will influence the coming European elections in Spain remains to be seen.

Source of image:  es.ara.cat