PM hides behind ‘theatrics, personal attacks and lies’ – Simon Busuttil
Prime Minister Joseph Muscat hid behind “theatrics, personal attacks and lies” when replying to the issues raised by the leader of the Opposition regarding this year's budget, Dr Busuttil said last night in reaction to Dr Muscat’s budget reply earlier.
This, according to Dr Busuttil, proved that the budget had no substance, and he called Dr Muscat a “salesman of a failed product”.
Dr Busuttil pointed to the lack of reduction in energy tariffs, questioning why Dr Muscat insists on not using the interconnector introduced by the previous administration when it would provide cheaper rates for the general population. This, he said, showed that the budget measures simply do not translate to an economy for the people.
With regard to social justice, Dr Busuttil said that the Prime Minister was once again using lofty words to avoid the truth. He pointed to an increase in poverty levels among pensioners since the beginning of Dr Muscat’s term in office, and labelled the measures in this year's budget, once again, as purely cosmetic.
Dr Muscat failed to address and improve the quality of life for the population, Dr Busuttil claimed. He pointed to the lack of proper projects, initiatives and incentives in the transport sector, and also criticised the Prime Minister’s attacks on the PN’s proposals for alternative transport. He also questioned why the incentive that will see 18-year-olds being granted a year of free public transport was not extended to government school and Church school students.
Finally, Busuttil attacked the government’s inability to maintain clean leadership, specifically with respect to the cases of Minister Konrad Mizzi and Dr Muscat’s chief of staff Keith Schembri and for retaining them regardless of the Panama Papers’ revelations last February.
Asked by The Malta Independent whether the European Union’s decision to introduce legislation favouring liquefied natural gas, which his MEPs’ also favoured, could be interpreted as a conflicting message in view of the PN’s stance against the LNG tanker, Dr Busuttil said: “The PN’s position was never against the use of gas as an energy source, but, rather, the safety risks associated with having an LNG tanker berthed so close to Marsaxlokk, which we have discovered could experience difficulties in stormy weather.”
Dr Muscat failed to address and improve the quality of life for the population