Busuttil pledges honesty
Simon Busuttil and Marlene Farrugia to discuss forming coalition against corruption
Opposition Leader Simon Busuttil and Partit Demokratiku (PD) leader and Independent MP Dr Marlene Farrugia will meet in the coming days to discuss the formation of a coalition against corruption.
Both MPs confirmed the meeting in separate comments to The Malta Independent.
Last Sunday, Dr Busuttil urged people to join the PN in a coalition against corruption, “a coalition between people of good will who do not turn a blind eye to corruption”.
After this statement, in a reply, Dr Farrugia wrote on Facebook that she was ready to work towards setting up a national coalition to ensure better governance, real social justice and the safeguarding of the environment. She said that this is the best gift one could give to the country on its 52nd anniversary since it attained Independence.
The Malta Independent asked Dr Busuttil and Dr Farrugia if they are ready to meet each other to discuss a way forward.
Dr Busuttil replied: “I am ready to meet Dr Farrugia to discuss a proposal for a national coalition against corruption.”
To the same question Dr Farrugia replied, “that the PD is ready to start discussing with the PN.”
When asked if she was going to attend the PN Independence mass meeting (held yesterday), Dr Farrugia said that she will not attend since her party is not yet formally established. She will be attending official Independence Day celebrations at St John’s Co Cathedral today.
Dr Farrugia added that she looks forward for a healthy coalition and she will make sure that things are done the right way.
Dr Farrugia resigned from the Labour Party last November. She had taken part in two Nationalist Party activities in protest against the use of ODZ land in Marsascala for the building of a new University and the Panama Paper scandal.
This newsroom also contacted Alternattiva Demokratika Chairperson Prof Arnold Cassola and asked him if his party is ready to join the coalition mentioned by Dr Busuttil. Prof Cassola said “Dr Busuttil does not mean coalition in the sense used in continental Europe. What he actually means is the assimilation by the PN of small political parties. The real solution to the disastrous lack of ethics in Maltese politics is a multi-party parliament and not a consolidation of the two party system”.
Leader of the Nationalist Party, Simon Busuttil has pledged honesty, as an asset he said he can offer to the people.
“I have no government jobs which I can offer you. I cannot buy your votes. I cannot be bought and I am not willing to sell my soul. But I can offer you something that others cannot – honesty!” he told the crowd gathered in Floriana.
He said the aim of forming a National Coalition against Corruption is to give the power to the people. Dr Busuttil said that anyone of good will can join. He welcomed people who had always voted for the Labour Party and last tonight decided to join in the mass meeting held by the Nationalist Party at the Granaries in Floriana to celebrate Independence.
Simon Busuttil said that he agrees with the proposal pushed forward by the National Youth Council so that voting is extended to those of 16 years and over. He said that this right should come into force as from the next general election.
“I want to thank all those involved in the party, and those who are willing to join this political force. We are working together so that the Nationalist Party will be trusted as the party to lead this country.”
Referring to the 52nd anniversary of Malta’s Independence, Dr Busuttil said he was very proud that it had been the Nationalist Party who had the vision and the courage to fight for Malta’s Independence.
“We are very proud of all the good things that this Party managed to leave Malta with. It was this party who was given the privilege to lead this country for more than 30 years.”
Dr Busuttil said that we have to go beyond than celebrating this anniversary. He said that it was our forefathers who made Independence Day possible. “It is our turn to make the country better than it is today.”
Addressing a crowd which gathered before the main stage, Dr Busuttil said that the workers are the backbone of our society. He said these hard working people still cannot feel the effect of the economic achievements which are praised so much by the government.
“These workers tell me they feel betrayed by the current administration. They feel that they were used only for the vote. To those who feel this way I tell you; the Nationalist Party will not put you aside. We have the workers at the heart of the party and we are here to serve you and to serve ourselves.”
He referred to the income of an average Maltese family.
“It is not true that a family can survive with a €25 budget for food each week as claimed by the Minister who has a company in Panama. I want to lead a government who is sensitive to your situations. I want to use the money collected from taxed not on Café Premier or Gaffarena.”
He promised that the Nationalist Party, if elected in government, would be willing to provide subsidy for those who rent property from a private owner.
“I do not agree with having the government raise monthly rent for those living in government housing estates. That is why my government will be lowering the rent back to how it was before.”
On pensions, Dr Busuttil said it is high time that pensioners are exempted from paying tax and said that any medicine should be made freely available to all pensioners.
“It is unacceptable to have those people who suffer from chronic diseases such as cancer and have them beg the President for help. What kind of dignity is this? You should get medicine for free, because this is why you pay your taxes.”
Speaking further on health, Dr Busuttil said that the government should ensure a good quality of life and emphasised the need to tackle diabetes, obesity and heart diseases. He said that a PN government will work to create new economic sectors “because the government has not explored any new sectors in these last three years”.
He referred to the government’s claim that the PN will not be supporting the government in the EU Council resolution of i-gaming. Dr Busuttil said that this is not true and called on Joseph Muscat to stop playing with partisan politics.
“Joseph Muscat has involved politics in the Freeport, in our financial services, fish farms and now, even gaming. Let’s work together, not against each other. If there is any risk involved in this sector, it is not coming from us, but from those who are tarnishing Malta’s reputation.”
On the environment, the PN leader said that he will have economic growth and the safeguarding of the natural environment work hand in hand. He also referred to the gas tanker which will soon be reaching Malta and told those who live in Marsaxlokk and Birzebbuga, that the PN will be defending their cause.
“I know that many of you are concerned about national security. Because this government is issuing hundreds of visas without us knowing who is, in reality, coming into our country.”
He said that in a period of three years, this government has hijacked the independent institutions of our country and reiterated the proposal to have those sitting at independent institutions elected by a two-thirds vote in parliament.
The mission of a government led by the Nationalist Party will be to eradicate corruption, he added while promising that all those who were involved in the government’s corruption will pay.
“To those asking if Simon Busuttil can really be trusted, I remind that when others told you to vote against Malta’s membership in the EU, I was there to persuade you otherwise and I had told you the truth.”
I have no government jobs which I can offer you. I cannot buy your votes. I cannot be bought and I am not willing to sell my soul. But I can offer you something that others cannot - honesty!
PN embarks on journey to remove the most corrupt government in Maltese history - Fenech Adami
Nationalist Party Deputy Leader for Party Affairs Beppe Fenech Adami said that the PN’s mass meeting to celebrate Independence Day will see the start of a journey which will lead the Nationalist Party to the next general election, “to remove the most corrupt government in Maltese history”.
“We have a few who are succeeding, but there are a lot of people who are being left behind.”
He said that the country is being led by people such as Cyrus Engerer, businessmen from Jordan and property owners in Old Mint Street.
“The Nationalist Party is the home for those young people who believe in political honesty, for small business owners and parents who work hard for their children. We are a party for the weak and vulnerable in our society.
“Be prepared, the coming months will be filled with constant work, we will knock on everyone’s door and convince people that Malta deserves much better.”
He said that the other party already stated that they will be fighting with an axe, or adopt an eye for an eye attitude, but the PN will fight back with the best weapon - honesty.
“Honesty, and Simon Busuttil are the best weapons we have,” he said as the crowd cheered.
Our independence today is threatened by those who do not have Malta’s interest at heart - De Marco
PN Deputy Leader for Parliamentary Affairs, Mario de Marco mentioned all the people who have made Independence day possible, and those who have made Malta proud.
He mentioned Nerik Mizzi, George Borg Olivier, Eddie Fenech Adami and Lawrence Gonzi.
He said Independence is not something you achieve once, but it is something you need to fight for every day. Dr de Marco said it was the Nationalist Party who managed to build important sectors on which today the government is basing its economic growth.
“We have managed to keep Malta’s name in a good light and our achievement, that of getting into the European Union, was not the destination, but a way of achieving better results.”
Dr de Marco said that the Maltese public faced threats to its independence in the past. But he said with maturity, one can look at these times and make sure that these are not repeated.
“Unfortunately, now we are still living in a time when our real independence is threatened. How independent are we when we have government deputies saying that they are not comfortable voting in favour of a particular minister?
“How can we be independent when the person who is leading the local police force, is not investigating serious allegations?”
He said he feels very disappointed with the Panama Papers scandal.
“A Minister has tarnished our reputation and our reputation of good governance. The logical conclusion before all of this, Konrad Mizzi and Keith Schembri should no longer serve our country.”
Dr de Marco said that this is obvious for everyone except for Joseph Muscat.
“To defend the interest of three people, he ignored the interest of the public.”
He mentioned Café Premier, Gaffarena and the Australia Hall as examples which show how Malta’s independence in being threatened.
Referring to the economic success, he said that as the economy grows, the difference between the rich and the poor is always growing larger.
“Before all these challenges, the PN can try and play along and win as much votes as possible. But in that way, we will be governing while being held hostage by those who have money.”
The PN Deputy Leader said that the Opposition is proposing that the highest positions should not be filled with people who are politically appointed, but by a twothirds majority in Parliament.
“The only way forward is honesty. Every Maltese should be proud of Malta. We are a very small country and we cannot keep this political divide.”
To those asking if Simon Busuttil can really be trusted, I remind that when others told you to vote against Malta’s membership in the EU, I was there to persuade you otherwise and I had told you the truth.