Bud­get ‘cos­metic and lack­ing vi­sion’ – Busut­til

Malta Independent - - BUDGET 2017 - Neil Camil­leri

Op­po­si­tion Leader Si­mon Busut­til yes­ter­day de­scribed the bud­get doc­u­ment pre­sented by Min­is­ter Ed­ward Sci­cluna as a “cos­metic bud­get that lacks vi­sion.”

Speak­ing to jour­nal­ists fol­low­ing last night’s bud­get speech, Dr Busut­til told jour­nal­ists that the pub­lic de­serves much more. “This is a bud­get which has a strat­egy for Comino, but men­tions no plan to solve traf­fic prob­lems,” he said.

“Tomorrow, the pub­lic out there will have the same is­sues as be­fore the bud­get. Peo­ple will still be stuck in traf­fic, Air Malta em­ploy­ees are still un­se­cure about their fu­ture and the peo­ple with can­cer are still wait­ing for their med­i­cal ap­point­ment.”

He said that the most awaited mea­sure – that of hav­ing utility bills re­duced – did not ma­te­ri­alise.

Dr Busut­til said that this govern­ment had the op­por­tu­nity to in­tro­duce this mea­sure as it had all the in­gre­di­ents to put this mea­sure for­ward. He men­tioned how this govern­ment had the in­ter­con­nec­tor, a new power sta­tion and even a record price re­duc­tion in in­ter­na­tional price of fuel.

He said that in his three-hour speech, in a 140-page doc­u­ment, Prof Sci­cluna failed to make any ref­er­ence to the LNG tanker.

“This bud­get has failed the Car­i­tas test, and failed to ad­dress the is­sue of poverty. Those in risk of poverty re­main as they are, even with a so-called so­cial bud­get.”

He ex­pressed sat­is­fac­tion with the fact that the PN has “pro­vided a so­cial roadmap” as the govern­ment de­cided to take on board pro­pos­als put for­ward by the Op­po­si­tion. He men­tioned mea­sures re­lated to rent and sick leave for par­ents who need to take care of their sick chil­dren.

“The bud­get lacks vi­sion, es­pe­cially in the eco­nomic sec­tor,” he said while say­ing that Joseph Mus­cat has made no ref­er­ence to the mid­dle class.

“We heard noth­ing on Brexit or on other chal­lenges which are wait­ing for us on the hori­zon. The govern­ment clearly lacks vi­sion on day-to-day prob­lems.”

Dr Busut­til in­sisted that with his clos­est per­sons next to him open­ing com­pa­nies in Panama, the Prime Min­is­ter has to make sure to cover things up with cos­metic pro­pos­als.

Si­mon Busut­til

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