The mayor, Juan Carlos Ruiz Boix, has demanded that the Andalusian Regional Government reopen the Carteia Archaeological Site to the public. The mayor considers that the cessation of this service "adds insult to injury" to the "punishment" which he believes the regional government is inflicting on San Roque, as it is not a new investment, but the loss of a resource which has been available to visitors, students and residents of San Roque for more than 20 years.
According to reports in the local press, the Andalusian Regional Ministry of Culture has not renewed the contract with the person who was the guide for the visits to the Archaeological Site of Carteia, which means that this resource has been closed to the public for weeks.
The mayor complained that in the municipality "we have been suffering for more than four years the absence of new policies, actions or new investments from the Junta".
The councillor considers that "this punishment is probably due to the fact that the PSOE governs San Roque. What seems to us to be a bit much is that we are losing political actions and investments that we have maintained for more than 20 years", in reference to what has happened in Carteia.
The mayor recalled that the various municipal governments of San Roque have always been committed to "adding value" to the site, especially by encouraging visits by people from all over the municipality and students from schools throughout the province. He also pointed out that in recent years various excavations have been carried out at the site, some financed by the Town Council, others by previous governments of the Junta de Andalucía and, finally, others by CEPSA.
In addition, he referred to the "lack of institutional loyalty" that has been shown by the visits made in recent years to the site by different territorial delegates of Culture and Government of the Junta, always carried out without inviting the Mayor of San Roque.
Ruiz Boix recalled that the Junta de Andalucía has been subtracting personnel from the Enclave Archaeological Site of Carteia, firstly from workers hired by the same regional administration, and then from employees of companies to which the service had been outsourced. Unfortunately," he stressed, "in recent days we have learned that there is no longer any kind of service provided for the residents of San Roque and students to learn about the reality of Carteia".
From here," said the mayor, "I raise my voice to demand that the president of the Junta de Andalucía, Juanma Moreno, defend all Andalusians equally, that he not be sectarian". He pointed out that "in San Roque it had been usual for us not to add new investments, but now it is a question of subtracting, of losing a service that had been growing in the number of visitors and therefore it was seen that it was attractive".
In this regard, he recalled that the City Council of San Roque had unsuccessfully asked the Territorial Delegation of Culture that some of the shows that are held in the Enclave of Baelo Claudia (Tarifa) could also be carried out in Carteia. "But now it is unheard of that they steal from us, that they take away services that were consolidated," he lamented.
I ask - said the mayor - an immediate rectification to the government of the Junta Andalucía", because "Nobody understands why the budgets of the Andalusian regional government are so low".
"Nobody understands why the highest budgets in the history of the Junta de Andalucía are not enough to maintain an already consolidated service such as the historical guided tours to the archaeological site of Carteia", he concluded.
Carteia has its origins in the 4th century BC, when the inhabitants of the Phoenician settlement of Cerro del Prado, located inside the estuary of the Guadarranque River, moved to a new site about two kilometres away, on the coast of the Bay of Algeciras. Although it emerged under Carthaginian rule, during Roman times Carteia became one of the most important cities in Hispania.
For her part, the Izquierda Unida deputy and spokesperson for the parliamentary group Por Andalucía, Inmaculada Nieto, will present a series of initiatives to inquire in parliament about the problems of the archaeological site of Carteia in San Roque.
"It is unacceptable that one of the archaeological sites in the Campo de Gibraltar has been closed down, while the Junta de Andalucía (Andalusian regional government) is giving the silent treatment. We are going to take this situation to the Andalusian chamber to demand explanations and solutions", said Inmaculada Nieto about the situation created in the archaeological site in San Roque.
Nieto has committed herself to a series of initiatives with the aim of asking for explanations about the current state of affairs at Carteia, about the causes that have led to its closure and about the measures planned to recover its activity.