At the beginning of 2018, the MAPiD campaign started promoting a citizen initiative to ask Barcelona’s residents if they want public water management, with citizen participation.
It has been a very intense path that required a great collective effort: more than 330 volunteers sought signatures to support the initiative; 42 spaces such as athenaeums, facilities, libraries, cafes and small shops served as fixed points for the collection of signatures; and more than 50 entities joined as we went along.
The self-management structures already in place in each of the districts of Barcelona have been fundamental to obtain signatures. Neighborhood by neighborhood, people of all ages organized events, lectures and roundtables to collect signatures.
On the last day of the campaign almost 27,000 signatures arrived at our office, almost double the required 15,000. Of these, 23,480 signatures have been validated by the municipality.
In spite of Agbar’s pressure, the democracy wins
At the Plenary Session of the Barcelona City Council on April 10th of 2018, Agbar’s behind-the-scenes political pressure and partisanship contributed to the majority vote against the citizen initiative, thereby overturning the consultation in an illegitimate way, and violating the Citizen Participation Regulation.
By means of a repleacement appeal we achieve the City Council call to repeat the Plenary Session, because of the violation of the Citizen Participation Regulation in April 2018.
The Plenary Session of the City Council on October 26th of 2018 approves the celebration of our consultation. Democracy wins this time!
Nevertheless, Agbar brings 5 judiciary against the democratic decision of the Plenary Session. We appear in these judicial appeals to follow closely the consultation development.
We ask to the City Council of Barcelona to commit on the consultation call, defending the city common will beyond the Agbar self-interest.