The president of Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Laurent Wauquiez (LR), criticized for budget cuts in culture, defends his choices of a territorial "rebalancing" and attacks the minister who according to him "would do better to get out between oneself and Parisianism", in the JDD.
The cultural policy of the former president of the Republicans has been denounced in recent weeks by the cultural and political world. "What crime have I committed that would be worth cultural excommunication?", indignant Mr. Wauquiez in this interview, recalling that when he took the Region to the left at the end of 2015, the budget for culture was 59 million euros. euros, against 77 million today.
Through the criticisms, the right-wing elected sees "a dangerous drift in our cultural policy": "The Ministry of Culture has become a counter, a machine for running the subsidies that a small handful of people consider as their due ".
"The majority of the credits of the Ministry of Culture are reserved for Paris, the Île-de-France Region and a few metropolises" and "there are cultural deserts in our country as there are medical deserts", estimates- he also mentions "a two-speed culture".
Thus, "I want to pay the same attention to the Lyon theater, which is lucky enough to benefit from hundreds of thousands of euros in state funding, as to that of Oyonnax, which is completely forgotten by the Minister of Culture", explains the President of the Region, defending himself from disfavoring cities in the hands of his political opponents.
"The Minister of Culture must explain herself on this subject instead of dodging. I ask her to be transparent about the distribution by territory of the ministry's credits", continues Laurent Wauquiez.
Rima Abdul Malak "would do better to get out of self-segregation and Parisianism", he judges, considering that "we are hard pressed to say what his cultural policy is".
The minister was worried about the choices of Laurent Wauquiez. "We see where his priorities are," she said recently in reference to the major projects he is carrying out - Museum of Fabrics, "Maison du Petit Prince" in the birthplace of the writer Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, tourist site dedicated to Gallic civilization on the Gergovie plateau.
"Laurent Wauquiez, why did you decide to make culture your enemy? Besides, it's not like you, your background, you're a very cultured person, you weren't like that before. What is it? what's going on?", she asked again on Saturday evening on France 2.
05/28/2023 08:34:43 - Paris (AFP) - © 2023 AFP