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Formentera cheers Xicu des Capri on Ramón Llull award

Xicu des CapriThe Formentera Council, by way of the administration's office of the presidency, extends its congratulations to Formentera-native Francesc Marí Mayans—Xicu des Capri—who is slated to receive the Govern Balear's Ramón Llull award on Monday 29 February. CiF president Jaume Ferrer expressed his delight seeing the formenterer snare such an important distinction.

According to the Balearic Islands government's website: «The award is conceived as a way to recognise and honour persons — both legal and physical — who have made a notable contribution to the region in terms of culture, sports, law, trade, civics, humanitarian work, research, education or linguistics».

Tourism and tradition

Organisers chose to grant this year's honours to Xicu—a pioneering entrepreneur in Formentera's tourism sector—for fomenting the role of community associations and defending traditional art forms like llaüt (dinghy) based fishing. Xicu was born in 1938, and has come to be held as the paradigm for promotors and tradesmen in tourism. Not only did he disseminate the values of an older, more traditional Formentera through an unbroken commitment to professional fishing, but he would also remain an active figure in the local tourism business throughout his life.

Xicu promoted and ran numerous es Pujols businesses but, as the CiF president pointed out today, was always mindful of keeping the traditional family spirit of the island intact. He served his own catches to the patrons of his restaurants – a clever way to promote traditional fishing – and was the face of Formentera for countless tourists.

Party reps want to meet with port authority, Eivissa administration to discuss new port

RP Junta de Portaveus Estació MarítimaThis morning, the grouping of local political party representatives known as the Junta de Portaveus gathered with Formentera Council president Jaume Ferrer to discuss last week's meeting of the Formentera Council of Entities. Wednesday, 17 February, members of the local business community and different island organisations convened an evening gathering to discuss the location of the new Formentera landing in the port of Eivissa. That evening, meeting attendees unanimously rejected the Balearic port authority's proposed relocation of the landing to Eivissa's commercial dock.

In a joint press conference, Ferrer announced the Junta's decision to request a meeting attended by Juan Gual de Torrella, president of the Balearic port authority, CiF president Ferrer, Formentera's party spokespeople and representatives of the two Eivissa administrations (the Council and the Ajuntament), «to open up new dialogue – with all the involved parties – on the relocation of the Formentera landing». In so doing, the Formentera representatives have taken up Gual de Torrella on an offer he extended at the Wednesday gathering to «meet with all the sectors affected by the relocation plans». After the meeting, Ferrer explained, «another gathering of the Council of Entities will be convened to report back».

All those present at the Junta gathering indicated their support for the decision, and reiterated their insistence on keeping the Formentera landing in its current home. If a move is ultimately unavoidable, party reps said they want their suggestions – which include calling for a maximum number of services and accommodation for Formentera residents – to be heard before the port authority.

Meeting with newly-appointed Moroccan consul in Balearics

Visita consol marrocFormentera Council president Jaume Ferrer and councillor of social welfare Vanessa Parellada met today with the newly-appointed Moroccan consul for the Balearic Islands, Hanane Saadi, in the presidential office of the CiF. Ferrer thanked the representative of Morocco, whose 434 countrymen on Formentera he said «form a very important part of the island». Ferrer offered an outstretched hand to the newly-appointed consul and declared: «This administration does everything it can to meet the needs of our island's Moroccan community».

Education and integration

For her part, the Moroccan consul gave thanks to Ferrer and Parellada for their welcome and used the opportunity to highlight the importance of education in assuring the proper integration of new generations of immigrants, who are Moroccan but also Spanish. «Not until a person knows his origins can he integrate in his new home, and that is what is most important for us: the integration of Moroccans living in Spain».

Travelling consul

The Consulate General of Morocco in Palma opened four years ago, explained Saadi. The Moroccan representative assured «the Consulate General's mobile office will travel to the Pitiüsas up to twice a year to provide Moroccan residents here access to consular services».

Formentera's political parties review legislative projects

Rp Junta PortaveusAt a morning meeting of the Formentera Council (CiF) Junta de Portaveus, a group comprising one spokesperson from each political party with representation in the Council as well as CiF president Jaume Ferrer, members discussed the progress of priority projects set out in a special CiF document. The document, ratified at a Junta meeting in August 2015 and later in a plenary session of the CiF, sets out a list of different projects requiring action from the Govern Balear.

In President Ferrer's words, the consensus-backed document gives credibility to the requests made by the CiF to the regional government in Palma. Ferrer added the Council's requests were «long-standing» and said the unanimity of the accord gives the local administration strength in its argument.

The meeting was a chance for members to speak about progress in the Formentera Council's relationship with the Palma government. As Ferrer pointed out, each of the 14 projects have been brought before the Govern (to the president or different regional ministers) because «they are either the direct responsibility of the Govern or require its intervention».  

Ferrer highlighted the Junta's unanimous decision to move forward with the different legislative projects and convene future meetings every six months or whenever there are important developments on an issue. In this way, he said, the Junta is sure to represent the support of the different groups with plenary representation. CiF president Ferrer thanked the different party spokespeople for their support of the document.

Emergency geolocalisation system enters trial phase

Entrega tablets geolocalitzacióEarlier today, the CiF office of the presidential cabinet distributed navigational devices to the emergency response services participating in Formentera's code-based system to geolocate homes and strategic points across the island. The system will remain in trial stages through May, announced presidential office councillor Bartomeu Escandell, who added that «the first year is going to be largely experimental – Formentera is the first in the country to put in place such a system to quickly locate rural homes».

The different emergency services forces received only a brief explanation of how to use the GPS devices; Escandell said that «in the coming weeks more thorough and personalised explanations will ensure their complete and correct use by the month of May». The twenty-five tracking tablets were handed out to members of civil protection services, the local police, Guardia Civil, Ibanat, the Formentera hospital, the Formentera fire brigade, social services and 061 services. «Using GPS technology», explained Escandell, «the emergency response services of the island will be able to locate the 3,600 homes that registered and received a code or any of the 800 different points of interest across the island».

The CiF councillor said the goal of the project is to make Formentera safer, rendering it possible to quickly arrive at a home or public place in the event of emergency. Xavi Vila, the director of the company in charge of the project, reminded residents in remote corners of the island that emergency codes can still be obtained by visiting the Citizens' Information Office (OAC), emailing This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or calling 971321087. The total cost of the emergency geolocalisation initiative – €183,436 – was met in equal parts by the Formentera Council and the Leader fund of the European Union.

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