Pedro Sánchez has been sworn-in as the new Prime Minister of Spain, after a day when scandal-hit rival Mariano Rajoy was ousted in a no-confidence vote. Sánchez became the first Spanish PM to be sworn-in without a Bible or a crucifix as he took an oath to office in the presence of King Felipe VI at Zarzuela Palace near Madrid.
Sánchez in his oath stated, “I promise by my conscience and honour to faithfully fulfil the obligations of the office of President of the Government with loyalty to the King and to keep and enforce the Constitution as the fundamental norm of the State”.
Spain is grappling with many economic and political challenges as the issue of Catalan independence remains unresolved and the effects of the global economic crisis have started to show up. Sánchez hails from the Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party, will announce his Cabinet in the coming week. He has been a pro-European economics professor, who has won the no-confidence vote in the race by many parties which include Podemos, Basque Nationalist Party and other Catalan independence parties. He will, however, have to work in tandem with other parties as his party has only won 84 seats in the 350-seat chamber.
Quim Torra, the separatist Catalan President has called on the new PM for dialogue. Catalonian independence had plunged the whole country into the worst crisis since decades. The autonomous region was stripped of all its powers administratively after Spain had imposed direct rule over it after Catalonia had declared its independence in October.
The new Prime Minister has expressed hope and promised a renewed innings for the country. He stated that it is time to build the nation which caters to all sections and does not leave anyone behind.