Popular's board unanimously propose Emilio Saracho as chairman

MADRID, Dec 21 (Reuters) - Spain’s Banco Popular said on Wednesday its board had unanimously proposed Emilio Saracho as chairman and agreed to hold an extraordinary meeting in February for shareholders to vote on the proposal.

Popular, regarded as the weak link of Spain’s banking sector, said on Dec. 1 it would replace Chairman Angel Ron with Saracho after shareholders rebelled as a result of his failure to clean up 30 billion euros ($32 billion) of toxic assets.

Spanish newspapers have speculated some board members close to Ron could still push for a different candidate to replace him.

Ron had long maintained Popular was financially strong enough to remain independent. Bankers and analysts say his ousting could mark it as a potential takeover target and trigger another phase of consolidation in Spain’s banking sector. (Reporting By Jesús Aguado; editing by Sonya Dowsett)