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09-09-2014  (2652 lectures) Categoria: Articles

Agustí Riera i Pau

 

Agustí Riera i Pau (Sábalo, Guane, Cuba, 2nd of July 1876- Les Encies, les Planes d’Hostoles, Garrotxa, 27th  of August 1936) was a doctor and conservative Catalan politician.

He was the second child of the doctor Narcis Riera Illa, from Vilamarí (Pla de l’Estany), and  Crescència Pau Caulas  from Besalú (Garrorxa). His parents emigrated for a time to Cuba fleeing from the Carlin third war. When they came back to Catalunya, Agustí was 8 years old. He had three sisters and two brothers.(1)

He attended the primary school of Besalú, where he met Francesc Cambó. He met him again when both of them were studying at the High School of Girona.  They had been good friends during all their lives and they both were members of the Lliga Regionalista since its foundation.

He studied medicine at the Universitat de Barcelona, where he finished  on the 30th may of 1899 awarded with the extraordinary prize. In 1903 he married Maria Teresa Trotcha Estalella, born in Cuba, daughter of Zenon Trotcha former banker  from Arenys de Mar, who also emigrated to Cuba.(2)  The couple were living in Barcelona  till the death of his father in 1903, when  they had to move to Sarrià de Ter, in order to take up his father’s surgery. They had seven children. He was a member of the Associació de Metges i Biòlegs  de Llengua Catalana in which he was the member assistant representing the Girona districts.(3) He was a loved and well considered doctor in Girona and its surroundings .

He was elected provincial deputy of Girona for the Lliga Regionalista and between the 13th March 1911 and the 13th January  1924 he was the President of the Diputació de Girona. As president he was cofounder of the Mancomunitat de Catalunya, organ formed by the 4 Catalan Diputacions which lasted from 1914 until 1925. He was appointed minister of the Mancomunitat de Comunicacions  i Obres Públiques. He was very efficient in this post and he enlarged the net of country and local roads, and he spread the telephone lines.(4) He also belonged together with his friend Francesc Cambó to the commission of Catalan members of Parliament in Madrid created in 1918.(5)

On the 9th January he was the president of Jocs Florals in Sarrià de Ter. On the 13th May 1923 he was chosen senator for the province of Barcelona.(6)  In 1933, as president of Centre Catalinista, he was appointed vicepresident  of  the Consell de Govern of the Lliga Catalana.

With the outbreak of the Civil War (18 july 1936) he was threatened to be killed. Cambó offered him the possibility to go on exile, as many other politicians did, but he did not accept the offer. On the 27th August 1936, he was found murdered in a little wood near “Les Encies” in “Les Planes d’Hosteles . They put his name in two streets in Girona (Pont Major) and Sarrià de Ter.