An Exercise in Political Makeover

The Mayor of Granadilla de Abona, Jennifer Miranda (PSOE), declared on Thursday that she would not be attending the meeting scheduled for Friday by the President of the Government of the Canary Islands, Fernando Clavijo (Canary Coalition), where the Mayor of Adeje, also a socialist, José Miguel Rodríguez Fraga will be present.

Miranda explained during a press conference that her decision was based on Clavijo’s statements and those of several members of the regional executive, who expressed reluctance to acquire the land on which the La Tejita hotel is being constructed, which symbolizes the necessity for a change in the economic model of the Canary Islands.

The Mayor feels that Clavijo’s intention with the meeting on Friday is to “isolate” the socialist mayors of Granadilla and Adeje (in relation to another controversial project, Cuna del Alma), which is why she has publicly declined the invitation.

Miranda questions why the Mayor of Arona, Fátima Lemes (PP), has not been invited when there are plans for the construction of three new hotels in that municipality under the El Mojón special plan.

She believes that the purpose of this meeting is “an exercise in political makeover” and has invited Clavijo and the President of the Tenerife Cabildo, Rosa Dávila, to visit the hotel construction site and the maritime-terrestrial public area affected by the project, as she has a strong impression that they lack awareness.

Miranda opines that Clavijo’s proposals regarding the La Tejita hotel aim to divert attention from the Government of the Canary Islands and isolate the PSOE. She suggests that the State should be responsible for acquiring the land through the mayors of Granadilla and Adeje.

She rejects the “technical arguments” presented by the Government of the Canary Islands for not purchasing the land of the La Tejita hotel, as there was an agreement with the developer approved by the previous regional executive, involving a payment of 25 million Euros in three annual instalments.

Last week, she met with the project developer, the Viqueira Group, who confirmed their willingness to sell the land with a price adjustment that includes an additional 200,000 Euros.

Regarding the conditions set by the President of the Tenerife Cabildo, Rosa Dávila, to support Granadilla in “saving La Tejita,” she argues that the Granadilla City Council cannot reassess the license without prior approvals from the Government of the Canary Islands and the Cabildo, supported by the required reports.

“If La Tejita truly symbolizes something, let the Tenerife Cabildo decide to allocate half of the planned expenditure for the motor circuit, approximately 44 million Euros, to acquire the hotel land,” stated Jennifer Miranda. She expressed Granadilla’s readiness to restore the area and “re-naturalize the space” once the land is purchased.

The local authority could allocate between two and three million Euros for this purpose, but she emphasized that they cannot risk burdening the residents’ future for the next ten to fifteen years, by investing nearly half of their budget in this operation to reclaim the land.

Jennifer Miranda has expressed full agreement with Fernando Clavijo’s statement that it is necessary to “reset and reevaluate” the economic and social model, asserting that “things must change,” although she added, “there needs to be a shift from mere words to concrete actions.”

She further explained that “Granadilla could represent a turning point for Tenerife and the Canary Islands”, as this town “has consistently been at the core of discussions due to the development of infrastructure that has sustained a model that depends on the consumption of the most valuable resources in the Canary Islands, our land.”

Miranda brought up initiatives such as the racetrack, a project that the former Cabildo president and PSOE leader on the island, Pedro Martín, continues to advocate for, as well as the port of Granadilla.

Miranda emphasized that “the weariness of the vast majority of society” in the Canary Islands “compels us, as public officials, to make bold decisions.” She called for a debate on “major infrastructures” needed in the Canary Islands, such as “improved hospitals, new schools,” initiatives to enhance mobility, rather than focusing on “huge projects like the racetrack” or those associated with hotel chains that “do not bring honour to the Canaries.”

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