The New Democracy Party (PND, of which I am a member) has already secured a victory for democracy in these elections, causing President Jardim to tone down his speeches and to cease violating the election law.
The PND was present at several inaugurations, contesting the President’s use of official state ceremonies for electoral propaganda in violation of election laws.
On the 29th of May, the PND was held back by Police from accompanying the inauguration of the promenade between Praia Formosa and Câmara de Lobos. The committee included members of the municipal assemblies of Funchal and Câmara de Lobos. The PND was finally allowed to assist the ceremony, where once again Jardim victimized himself, complaining that Portugal’s fascist laws did not allow him to make electoral propaganda during state ceremonies. Watch, out, there are fascists out there, he warned. The PND subsequently raised a banner in protest.
Following the controversy, Police was informed by the local representative of the National Commission of Elections that they could not bar elected members form assisting state ceremonies. President Jardim made statement calling for the substitution of the judge representing the Commission in Madeira.
Days later, Securitas, a private security firm was hired to bar access to another inauguration ceremony, this time of the public electricity company. The National Commission of Election spokesman reacted, making a public statement to say that we could not be stopped from assisting these public ceremonies and that protest banners could also be shown on such occasions.
On the 30th of May, the PND was again present at the inauguration of two EU-funded agricultural roads in Canhas. Despite heavy police and undercover agent presence, no attempt was made to hinder our presence at the event. President Jardim made no derogatory speeches against the opposition and even thanked ‘all those present’.
Whether this is a temporary victory remains to be seen.