The PSOE has agreed to summon José Luis Ábalos to the Congressional investigation commission on the purchase of medical supplies during the pandemic. The socialist group had ignored the former minister and former Secretary of Organization of the PSOE in its proposal for appearances, but the parliamentary allies did want to call the person responsible for the department where the plot of illegal commissions in the purchase of masks and other items to testify. essential products during the health crisis. The socialists have assumed their impossibility of leaving out the current deputy of the Mixed Group.

The investigation commission met this Tuesday behind closed doors to debate and approve the initial work plan. The basis for doing so has been the PSOE proposal, although the groups have finally managed to introduce some more names on a list that will contain up to 134 appearing.

The party led by Pedro Sánchez announced that it would request parliamentary investigations in response to the police operation that revealed the so-called ‘Koldo case’, an alleged plot of businessmen and senior socialist officials who had promoted contracts for the sale of medical supplies and charged illegal commissions to change.

One of those named is Koldo García, Ábalos’s right-hand man in both the PSOE and the Ministry of Transport. The advisor is charged, but the former socialist number two is not. Even so, Sánchez demanded his deputy status. Ábalos refused to resign and went to the Mixed Group, from which he voted in favor of the investigation commission.

The groups will also call, in addition to Koldo and Ábalos, some of the main people involved in the cause. Joseba García, brother of Koldo; Juan Carlos Cueto, alleged ringleader of the plot; the businessman Víctor de Aldama, supposed getter of the contracts, and José Ángel Escorial, former owner of the company investigated in the Koldo case.

The commission will also summon, although on a more general basis, the chief anti-corruption prosecutor, Alejandro Luzón, and the president of the Court of Accounts, Enriqueta Chicano Jávega. Chicano Jávega will be the first to appear in the investigative commission that will start next Monday. That day, in the afternoon, the former Minister of Health and PSC candidate for the Catalans, Salvador Illa, will attend.

Those who will not have to testify before Congress in this first round of appearances are some of the most prominent names from the main parties. PSOE and PP have been looking askance at each other for weeks over cases of corruption related to the purchase of medical supplies and measuring each step to be taken based on what the rival is doing. A kind of parliamentary cold war that is played out in parallel in the Congress and the Senate.

Thus, Congress has left Pedro Sánchez and Alberto Núñez Feijóo, who was president of Galicia during the pandemic, out of the first round of appearances. And neither is the president’s wife, Begoña Gómez, whom the PP has put in the spotlight despite the warnings of the lawyers since they do not dare to summon her.

Nor will Alberto González Amador, Isabel Díaz Ayuso’s partner and accused by the courts of trying to defraud the Treasury of hundreds of thousands of euros of the million-dollar commissions he earned as an intermediary in the purchase of masks during the pandemic, be called to testify for now. Both Sumar, Esquerra Republicana and EH Bildu had requested his appearance, but the PSOE has finally decided to vote against.

The groups, however, agree to summon several regional presidents. The majority of the PP but also of the PSOE: the Madrid president; the president of the Balearic Islands, Marga Prohens; the Murcian Fernando López Miras; that of Andalusia, Juan Manuel Moreno Bonilla or the Galician Alfonso Rueda. Also the mayor of Madrid, José Luis Martínez Almeida, and Miguel Ángel Rodríguez, Ayuso’s chief of staff. Within that list will be the Deputy Secretary of Autonomous Policy of the PP, Elías Bendodo, and the parliamentary spokesperson of the PP and Feijóo’s right-hand man, Miguel Tellado.

On behalf of the PSOE, in addition to Illa, there will be the president of Congress and former president of the Balearic Islands, Francina Armengol, and the former Canary Islands president and Minister of Territorial Administration, Ángel Víctor Torres. The groups have also agreed to call part of the Health Cabinet, such as the former advisor and main visible face during the pandemic, Fernando Simón, as well as Illa’s former chief of staff, Víctor Francos.

Research around Ayuso

Although the socialists launched this commission in Congress after the outbreak of the ‘Koldo case’, the list that has been agreed upon with the rest of the groups intends to cover the pandemic contracts in all administrations and focuses on some that have been coming to light since then. Among them, the scam for the purchase of masks from the Madrid City Council and, more recently, the fraud against the Treasury. Alberto González Amador that this newspaper published and that the Prosecutor’s Office is investigating.

Regarding the latter, although the groups do not name the main person involved, they do cite several people who appear in the investigation. For example, Maximiliano Niederer, alleged front man of González Amador, and Javier Luis Gómez Fidalgo, the prosecutor who defended Ayuso’s couple before the Tax Agency and who manages the company that owns the penthouse in which they both live.

Some of the main names of the Ayuso Government during the pandemic are also called on account of this case. In addition to the president herself and her chief of staff, the groups call Enrique Ruiz Escudero, senator and former councilor of the Community of Madrid; and the general secretary of the PP of Madrid, Alfonso Serrano.

Although the groups do not directly call either Ayuso’s partner or her brother, Tomás Díaz Ayuso, the documentation requests that they have approved do point to the Madrid president’s entourage. For example, they ask the company Priviet Sportive for all “labor, commercial or commercial” contracts with the brother, as well as communications between them and “in relation to the sale of medical supplies to the Community of Madrid.”

They also ask the Tax Agency for information about the company and the brother of the Madrid president, as well as her partner.

The investigation will send a request for documentation to the Community of Madrid to provide a copy of the email that Ayuso sent to the company Avalmadrid “to ask about the consequences of the non-payment of the loan from the company MC INFORTÉCNICA SL”, the father’s company. of the Madrid president.

On the other hand, they want to investigate the luxury aparthotel where Ayuso stayed during the pandemic, when she had to isolate herself due to testing positive for coronavirus. To do this, they ask the hotel company Room Mate, where he stayed during the first general confinement, for “all rental or transfer contracts, or any provision of services, or use of its hotel facilities, or any other properties” with Ayuso, as well as “invoices or proof of payment for the contracted services.” And they do the same with the owner of the company, Enrique Sarasola.

The groups also ask Ayuso herself for all available documentation on the “economic, corporate relationships, loans, donations or situations of participation in real estate properties that she may maintain” with her partner, as well as with her brother.

Masks Case

Another of the corruption cases that this commission will analyze is the one that affected the Madrid City Council, the one known as the Masks Case, which this newspaper uncovered. To do this, the groups have summoned Almeida himself, but also the City Council’s purchasing manager during that stage, Elena Collado, who was later hired by Feijóo as the party’s Public Efficiency Manager.

Javier Luceño and Luis Medina, the main defendants in the investigation into that case, will be included in this investigation, as well as Fernando Sánchez González, manager of the Municipal Company of Funeral Services and Cemeteries of Madrid, Inmaculada Sanz, PP councilor in the City Council and president of Funeral Services of Madrid and Mario Tabasco, head of the occupational risk prevention service of Madrid Salud.

The groups will also call the “person who holds the legal representation of the Eulen group” to try to obtain information about the contracts that the Xunta de Galicia awarded to that company during the Feijóo stage. In that period, Eulen received contracts from the Galician Government for more than 37 million euros, as revealed in 2022 by the newspaper Public. The PP president’s sister, Micaela, heads the northwest section of that group, a position to which she was promoted in 2016.

The PSOE has agreed to include on the list for this commission several of the names that Sumar had requested, which wanted to focus the investigation on the appearance of experts on corruption and intermediate positions. For this reason, several university professors on the subject, the president of the Group of States against Corruption (GRECO), Marin Mrčela, and journalists José Precedo and Pedro Águeda, who revealed the fraud, will pass through the commission in the future. to the Treasury of González Amador and the scam against the Madrid City Council of Luceño y Medina.


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