Far ahead in arrogance ………………..

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This morning in Parliament, His Excellency President George Abela launched the government’s five year programme. We need to discard the ways of old and embrace a new way of doing politics. It is indeed unfortunate that we are far ahead in embedding arrogance in government   ……………

His Excellency was obviously reading out the script which others have written. He symbolically heads the government and hence he reads out the programme of “his government”.

The problem with the President’s speech is that we have heard it many a time. Maybe in less colourful language, but surely it has been listened to before.

Obviously the proof of the pudding is in the eating. We still need proof that shortly we will start lagging behind in arrogance, and maybe for a change being leaders in something positive!

I await some positive signal, which I have not yet noticed.

Malta’s reputation and the Olympics

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Last June The Times informed us that Justice Minister Chris Said had called on the Commission for the Administration of Justice to investigate Mr Justice Lino Farrugia Sacco in view of reports carried in London’s Times on the Olympics ticketing scam.

Mr Justice Farrugia Sacco had stated that there was no wrong-doing at his end. In fact he had informed The Times that: “We would never go against the rules of the International Olympic Committee ( IOC). It’s not worth it.”

On the 22 June 2012 The Times had informed its readers that His Excellency President George Abela would abstain from presiding over the investigation requested by the Justice Minister as in the past he (Abela) had represented Mr Justice Farrugia Sacco as legal counsel. The investigation consequently was to be led by the Vice President  of the Commission, the Chief Justice Dr Silvio Camilleri.

No one knows anything else about the investigation requested by Justice Minister Chris Said.

Yesterday 7 December 2012 The Times reported the conclusions of the IOC five-month international investigation into Olympic ticket selling.

I have accessed the website of the International Olympics Committee which reported that on the 5th December 2012 the Executive Committee of the IOC considered and approved “the Ethics Commission proposed recommendations, which were based on a thorough analysis of the evidence provided by the Sunday Times and several hearings.”

The report of the Ethics Committee of the IOC makes interesting reading.

Paragraph 17 of the IOC Ethics Committee Report states the following :

“With regard to the NOC [National Olympic Committee] of Malta,

a) Mr Lino Farrugia, President of the Maltese NOC:

After taking cognisance of all the evidence and his observations, the Commission observes that, by agreeing to take part, with the NOC Secretary General, in a discussion concerning the ATR contract for the Games in Sochi, when it was apparent that his interlocutors seemed to be looking for ways to circumvent the official mechanism, Mr Farrugia allowed the journalists to prove their point.

b) Mr Joe Cassar, Secretary General of the Maltese NOC:

After taking cognisance of all the evidence and his observations, the Commission observes that, by agreeing to discuss the ATR contract for the Games in Sochi when his interlocutors were clearly looking for ways to circumvent the official mechanism and knowing that some of the tickets could be sold in the Middle East; and finally by explaining which means could be used to get around the mechanism, Mr Joe Cassar helped to prove the point being made by the journalists, namely that the sports world and those who work with it are prepared to violate the rules. As a result, Mr Joe Cassar helped the reputation of the Olympic Movement to be tarnished.”

The IOC Ethics Committee concluded by giving its opinion which was unanimously approved: either the local Olympic Committees take action against the named officals who have tarnished the reputation of the Olympic Movement, or else :

“The Commission is further of the view that, in the absence of appropriate action by the NOCs or the individuals concerned, the IOC Executive Board has the authority to take the appropriate administrative measures, particularly with regard to issuing accreditations for the various IOC organized events such as the Olympic Games, the Youth Olympic Games, Sessions and other IOC meetings.”

In view of the above it is clear that the matter is not just an internal matter for the Malta Olympic Committee. It may well involve non-participation of maltese sportsman and women in Olympic activities.

I have no hope that Parliament will act by impeaching Mr Justice Farrugia Sacco, even if that is what he deserves.

What will happen now is anybody’s guess. Will the sports organisations stand up to be counted?

The International Olympic Movement is worried because its reputation has been tarnished. Unfortunately it seems that no one is worried in Malta. No one seems to care that Malta’s reputation is being severely tarnished. It gets worse.

The silence of the authorities is deafening. It defines the ethical standards of public officials!

Qed tagħqad u George Abela qiegħed il-Peru

Il-Membri Parlamentari Jefffey Pullicno Orlando u Franco Debono qed jgħidu li l-President tar-Repubblika jkun ġustifikat illi jibgħat għall-Avukat Lawrence Gonzi, Prim Ministru, biex jara li dan jagħmel verifika dwar jekk għadux igawdi l-appoġġ tal-Parlament.

Imma l-President tar-Repubblika George Abela dan ma nistax jagħmlu minħabba li qiegħed għal missjoni l-Peru.

L-Onorevoli qed jirreferu għall-provedimenti kostituzzjonali li l-Prim Ministru j/tkun dik il-persuna minn fost il-membri tal-Parlament li tgawdi l-appoġġ tal-maġġoranza tal-membri parlamentari. Għax fil-waqt li l-parlament huwa elett għal ħames snin il-Gvern qiegħed hemm sakemm ikollu l-fiduċja tal-Parlament!

Issa Franco qal li meta l-Eżekuttiv tal-PN ikkundannah, dan għamlu fl-assenza tiegħu. B’hekk inkisru d-drittijiet tiegħu. Jekk mhux ser jittrattawħ “sewwa” u jirrevedu l-kundanna tiegħu huwa jkollu jikkunsidra mill-ġdid il-posizzjoni tiegħu fil-PN.

Qalilna ukoll li b’Austin Gatt fil-Kabinett ma jistax jappoġġa l-Gvern. L-anqas il-budget ma jista’ jappoġġa.

Issa fir-realta tant qal affarijiet li kont insejt li meta bdiet l-istorja kollha kien qalilna ukoll li lest jappoġġa lil kulħadd ħlief lil Lawrence Gonzi.

Il-kobba issa qed titħabbel. Jekk tagħqad waqt li George Abela jkun għadu l-Peru ikollu jersaq fin-nofs is-Sur Anton Tabone, Aġent President.

George Abela

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Il-gazzetti tal-lum kif ukoll l-aħbarijiet ewlenin imxandra mill-PBS il-bieraħ fil-għaxija huma kelma waħda : li jidher li intlaħaq qbil dwar l-għażla ta’ George Abela bħala President tar-Repubblika.

 

Din l-aħbar hi waħda tajba, l-ewwel waħda tax-xorta tagħha għal ħafna żmien. Kien ilu li wasal iż-żmien li dan il-pajjiż joħroġ mil-politika tat-tribujiet Maltin u li partit fil-Gvern jagħżel membru ta’ Partit fl-Opposizzjoni bħala President tar-Repubblika.

 

Kienet xierqa għalhekk l-għażla ta’ George Abela.

 

 

Din l-għażla għandha l-ewwel u qabel kollox tgħaqqad lil Maltin kollha f’pajjiż wieħed u twassal il-messaġġ li l-pajjiż hu ta’ kulħadd. Konsiderazzjoni oħra pero, u importanti daqsha hi li nittama li din id-deċiżjoni tkun l-ewwel minn bosta li twassal għal mod differenti ta’ kif issir il-politika. Fejn it-twemmin politiku ma jibqax ikun ta’ ostaklu biex naħdmu iktar flimkien fl-interess ta’ dan il-pajjiż.