Threat to topple Madeiran government

Albuquerque resigns or coalition partner quits

Mónica Freitas, the elected PAN deputy in Madeiran government
Mónica Freitas, the elected PAN deputy in Madeira.

SIC Noticias reports that the Government’s coalition partner PAN Madeira have delivered “a real bomb” to the President of the Regional Government, Miguel Albuquerque in a statement sent to the media at the end of today, Thursday”.

The TV station goes on to describe how PAN (People/Animals/Nature), which has a parliamentary influence agreement with the PSD, thus making the Regional Government viable, has made it known that either the president resigns or the party will break with the agreement signed after the 2024 regional elections and which allowed the PSD to form an executive with absolute majority, in coalition with the CDS, in the Legislative Assembly of Madeira.

The President of the Regional Government of Madeira has been named a defendant in an investigation into suspected crimes of corruption , economic participation in business, and malfeasance, among others.

However, Miguel Albuquerque reiterated today that he will not resign and that he is looking to defend himself “without stigma”. He still said he had a “clear conscience”.

PAN: Albuquerque does not have “the conditions to remain in his role”.

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PAN make it clear that theywill continue to support the government, but not Albuquerque – either the president resigns, or PAN drops out of ‘agreement’ with minority PSD/ CDS coalition.

The party whose support is keeping the PSD/CDS coalition in power, has said it will only continue to do so if Albuquerque is substituted. PAN’s regional committee said in a statement that, as things stand, it does not consider that Miguel Albuquerque “has the conditions to remain in his role”.

In the statement sent to newsrooms this evening, the committee said: “PAN Madeira is available to continue to make the parliamentary advocacy agreement with PSD Madeira viable if a new President of the Regional Government of Madeira is appointed and accepted, and if the conditions are met for government stability in the region and for the continued fulfilment of the agreement between PAN Madeira and PSD Madeira.” 

SIC Noticias‘ opinion is that PAN’s position puts Mr Albuquerque “in check, if not checkmate”. It means if he persists in ‘staying on’, his government will fall and president Marcelo may be forced to call early elections.

A new figure to lead the regional executive is a condition

In the statement, PAN makes it known that it is willing to facilitate a new government of the current coalition, but without Miguel Albuquerque as president. That is, the majority would have to find a new figure to lead the regional executive. 

” We informed the president of PSD-Madeira, Dr. Miguel Albuquerque, that PAN Madeira is available to continue to facilitate the parliamentary influence agreement with PSD-Madeira, if a new holder is appointed, and accepted, for the position of president of the Regional Government of Madeira and the conditions for government stability in the Region are met and for the continued fulfillment of the agreement signed between PAN Madeira and PSD-Madeira”
The Government’s coalition partner PAN Madeira statement

If Albuquerque does not waver and if the agreement between the two parties is broken, the PSD and CDS will have 23 deputies in parliament, losing their absolute majority. The opposition then has 24 parliamentarians, being able to block the government’s action and remove it from power, for example by passing a motion of censure. Then the scenario would be early elections. However, the ALM can only be dissolved from March, the month in which six months have passed since the date on which it was elected.

This afternoon, in Câmara de Lobos, Miguel Albuquerque once again emphasized that he is not resigning from his position, despite admitting that he may request the waiver of the immunity to which he is entitled, namely that which comes from his status as a member of the Council of State.

Calls for the President of the Government to resign have increased in recent hours. The PS-M, through its leader, Paulo Cafôfo, did so this morning, at the party’s second press conference in the last 24 hours. The Liberal Initiative, too, as well as the Bloco de Esquerda, the PCP and Chega. Only the JPP did not demand Miguel Albuquerque’s departure, despite saying that he must lift his parliamentary immunity.

Here we see that it will be impossible for the largest party in Madeira to find a new parliamentary partner. The PAN’s extreme position comes after an internal current within the party publicly criticized the actions of ‘Pessoas Animais e Natureza’ in relation to this case.

They accuse Inês Sousa Real,  currently president of the PAN parliamentary group in the Assembly of the Republic. of “inconsistency” for asking Costa to resign and defending the opposite in relation to Albuquerque.

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5 thoughts on “Threat to topple Madeiran government”

  1. Elect a new government..? Like we do here in the the UK where we just swap the Clownservatives for Liebour..? Does my life get any better..? No.. the rich get richer while the workers pay the taxes & go on strike for better pay & condition’s while our government gives £Billions£ away to foreign countries…with one hand then with the other hand saying they can’t afford pay rises for the NHS..

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    • Sadly I agree with you however I do think voters need to ask themselves why they have repeatedly voted these crooks in both countries back into power? In the UK the undemocratic first past the post electoral system has enabled majority governments to be elected with not much more than 40% of votes cast and certainly never a majority of the electorate. In Madeira with its multi party proportional representation electoral system sadly coalitions have propped up the oligarchs who have reigned unopposed since 1976. A total clear out of the political class in both countries is necessary if any change is ever to to happen.

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  2. That creates a vacuum and only more badness replaces it,but that aside for a minute.
    I’m not a legal mind and therefore just try and look at things like this with a balanced view, and what I’m seeing here amounts to trial by media and a great many people presuming that these people are guilty without due process of law taking place, that can’t be right, across the whole world of differing governing approaches, the shout of corruption goes up regularly and in some cases its a justifiable shout and alludes to the whole system,in other cases,its aligned to individuals.
    From my experience of Madeira stretching back some 25 years or so, it’s been a stable government and done a very reasonable job for its citizens, having experienced how they handled Covid, was very impressive and reasuring and did the population a great service, they are doing a great job of expanding the economy,all be it too aligned to tourism.
    These people deserve to be treated as inicent until proven guilty, that’s how it works If its a fair system.
    Finally can I point something out that is getting brushed over, who on earth sanctioned that the military get involved with the justice system, providing milatry airplane for bringing the juditial people in and Im led to believe taking the arrested back to mainland,someone in another country, using its power to remove from office people who had been democratically elected to that office,by the citizens of Madeira, that was a mistake of the highest order. Politics and Military for this sort of thing are not good bedmates, it’s dangerous and if these guys are guilty this approach may actually give them the get out of jail card,their defence would be looking for.
    All food for thought.

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  3. Interesting! I wonder what a new govt would do if it got rid of its English overlords? My father – God rest his soul- always said Madeira will be the last colony the British give up!

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  4. Not sure,what the English have to do,with this Elizabeth, other than passing comments on it, this all aligns to Portugal,from what I see and read. From the texts I’m getting from friends and neighbours there is a lot of serious concerns for their livelihoods ( some quiet irrational concerns) about the survival of the companies they work for. We can but only wish for stability as soon as practical and hope and pray that the people who are left to sort this out,have the ability, strength and wisdom to do that.

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