Formigoni: “It’s turnover, not a reshuffle. On to 2015”
Luciana Ruffinelli and Margherita Peroni are taking the places of Rizzi and Maullu, who are resigning. The President of the Region: “The opposition can call for a vote of no confidence; let them, if they’re brave enough.”
“This isn’t a reshuffle, but turnover. We didn’t want it; the courts forced us to do it.” This is how Roberto Formigoni, the President of Lombardy Region, explained the arrival of two new councillors (both women) in place of Monica Rizzi (Northern League) and Stefano Maullu, who have resigned.
The former resigned yesterday, for political reasons within her party, more than anything else, and the latter also resigned yesterday, but without reason. And it was Formigoni himself who explained. “The government would have soon rebuked the Region because of the low female presence on the council. I asked my councillors who would be prepared to step back, and this is why Maullu resigned.”
Luciana Ruffinelli (Northern League), from Busto Arsizio, is replacing Rizzi, with the same job of Sport and Young People, and Margherita Peroni, from Brescia, is taking over from Maullu, with the job of Trade, Tourism and Services.
“As you can see, it’s turnover, not a reshuffle.” Even though he claimed to be tranquil, Formigoni was unable to hide a certain nervousness. First of all, about the “courts”. “This change was force on us from outside, it’s basically exchanging one man for one woman. However, I object to this action of the courts with respect the regional council. The power should be held by the people who voted in only three women of the 50 councillors in the majority. An imposed rule is no good to anybody, least of all to women.”
With this exchange, the council will have three female members (the other woman is Valentina Aprea), and one female undersecretary (Ombretta Colli).
Recent events have also annoyed Formigoni, with the news in the press about alleged holidays paid for by Pierangelo Daccò, who is involved in the Maugeri scandal. “I have been going on group holidays for fifty years, and I’m perfectly capable of paying my own expenses. If anything, I might pay for friends in need,” he explained.
Formigoni finally spoke about politics, about the rumours concerning the state of his coalition, and the attacks by the opposition. “My majority is solid, and is behind me and the council. The groups of PDL and Northern League councillors have the same numbers as two years ago. On the other hand, the opposition has lost members, because of party and group changes. This majority hasn’t lost any members, and we’ll go on working till 2015.”
Then came his invitation (not “challenge”, as he himself pointed out). “Let the opposition do what they’ve been threatening. Instead of continuing to call for my resignation, they should use the means they have in the regional council; they can officially call for a vote of no confidence. They should have the political courage to do this.”
On the question of ethics in the council, where 10 of the 80 members are under investigation, the President was clear. “Notification that you’re being investigated isn’t a conviction. Boni decided to resign, but he didn’t have to. Meanwhile the opposition groups continue to call for resignations here, but they say nothing about the Vendola, Errani, or De Magistris.