Barcelona‘s presidential elections scheduled for Jan. 24 have been postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
A choice was taken on Friday following a gathering between the membership and the federal government.
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A club statement learn: “Catalan Government and FC Barcelona have held a virtual working meeting to address the holding of the elections for President and Board of Directors of the sports entity in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“In the course of the assembly, the federal government has conveyed to the membership that the present epidemiological scenario doesn’t make it potential to authorise the motion exterior the municipality to members who do not need a polling station of their municipality on Jan. 24, given the excessive mobility this might entail.
“For its part, the club has stated the impossibility of holding elections on the scheduled date due to mobility restrictions decreed by the Catalan Government in the current context of pandemic, which is why the date of the elections must be delayed.”
A second assembly will happen on Friday night between performing president Carles Tusquets, and the three presidential candidates, Joan Laporta, Victor Font and Toni Freixa to talk about a brand new potential date.
Barca announced on Thursday that ex-vice president Emili Rousaud had withdrawn his bid to stand for election, leaving simply Laporta, Font and Freixa within the race.
Laporta, who was the Barca president between 2003 and 2010, had 9,625 members signatures verified by the membership — nearly double that of nearest candidate Font — was towards the postponement.
“t would be a serious mistake,” Laporta said ahead of Friday’s meeting. “Mechanisms have been established so that it does not affect, and members can vote with a democratic and sanitary guarantee. I hope they can vote because that is what all Barcelona fans want.”
Josep Maria Bartomeu resigned as Barca president on Oct. 29 forward of going through a followers’ vote of confidence on his future on the membership.
Barca agreed with the Catalan government on Nov. 30 to maintain the elections on Jan. 24, choosing 10 electoral voting places.
However, with Spain enduring a third wave of COVID-19 and cases escalating and additional restrictions introduced in Catalunya to lessen the spread of the virus, the choice has been taken to postpone the election.
Font, in favour of the transfer, stated he had recommended to the membership to transfer elections ahead.
“Considering that mail voting is not allowed, and you can’t even vote in your own municipality, we asked the club in a letter to advance the elections,” he stated earlier this week.
“Nothing was done by the club. Now we find ourselves in a very worrying situation from a health standpoint. What is clear is that right now, you cannot have the elections on Jan. 24. With the actual restrictions in place, you cannot guarantee the right to vote to all our members.”
With Barcelona reporting having greater than 60% of its members over 50 years of age, the well being of Barca members is a precedence.
“We ask that it [election] can be done having the best health guarantees possible in order to foment maximum participation,” Font stated.