IT has become one of the best known landmarks in Malaga city with thousands of tourists and expats being treated at the Carlos Haya hospital every week.
But the vast majority will be unaware that the coast’s leading hospital is named after a former Fascist fighter pilot, who may have even strafed the city during his reign of terror.
Now, appropriately the Junta is demanding that the mayor of Malaga enforces a name change of the popular hospital.
Three years after the Law of Historical Memory was passed in Spain, politicians are furious that such blatant references to the Franco era still exist.
Carlos Haya was the dictator’s personal pilot and flew him and other Fascist troops over from Morocco at the beginning of the Civil War.
Known as the ‘Convoy of Victory’ many of the planes were later used to bomb the city of Malaga, which was the only Andalucian city to stay defiantly Republican for the first year of the war.
It is not known if Haya was actually involved in the bombing or the later massacre of civilians as they fled the city towards Almeria as it fell to the rebels in February 1937.
He was later killed during combat over Teruel.
“If mayor Francisco de la Torre is a democrat, he has no reason not to enforce a state law,” insisted Luis Naranjo, from the Junta’s Ley de la Memoria Histórica department.
“It is incredible that there are still many Fascist symbolic references in Malaga’s streets”
Naranjo added that he had finally reached a verbal agreement with the Health Department about changing the name of the Carlos Haya Hospital to ‘Hospital Regional de Malaga’.
And he dismissed claims from PP party that changing the name would be too costly during the current economic crisis.