L-awtonomija amministrattiva tal-Parlament

Malta Parliament

 

Il-Parlament jerġa’ jiltaqa’ llum, wara l-waqfa għall-btajjel tal-Milied.

Fuq quddiem fl-aġenda tal-lejla hemm għad-diskussjoni abbozz ta’ liġi dwar is-servizz Parlamentari. Permezz ta’ din il-liġi, meta tkun approvata, l-Parlament ser jingħata l-awtonomija amministrattiva.

Din hi inizjattiva li ilha li bdiet is-snin, miż-żmien li kien Speaker Anton Tabone, imma ngħatat spinta kbira mill-iSpeaker Michael Frendo. L-iSpeaker attwali Anġlu Farrugia wassal il-proposta sal-punt tal-lum.

L-abbozz ta’ liġi jipprovdi għall-ingaġġ tal-impjegati tal-Parlament, li ser jkun separat minn dak tas-servizz pubbliku, kif ukoll jipprovdi għal budget tal-Parlament li jkun wieħed approvat mill-Parlament separatament mill-budget normali.

F’Settembru 2012, Tonio Borg li dakinnhar kien Ministru għall-Affarijiet tal-Parlament kien ħareġ White Paper intitolata : Il-Parlament Malti: Iktar Awtonomija Iktar Responsabbiltà.

L-awtonomija amministrattiva tal-Parlament hi pass fid-direzzjoni tajba. Xi darba ma tafx kif, forsi jirrealizzaw ukoll li ilu li wasal iż-żmien li l-membri parlamentari jeħtieġ li jkunu kollha fulltimers.

Imma issa drajna nimxu bil-mod. Fl-aħħar imma naslu ukoll!

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L-interess nazzjonali

 silenced

Qed jgħidulna li min jitkellem b’mod kritiku dwar dak li jkun qed jiġri f’Malta barra l-pajjiż ikun qed jaġixxi kontra l-interess nazzjonali.

Jekk taqra dak li qed jingħad qiesu hemm xi obbligu li f’fora internazzjonali kull Malti għandu l-obbligu li jfaħħar u jappoġġa dak li jagħmel il-Gvern. Bħala eżempju ġieli jgħidulna li d-delegazzjoni Laburista fil-Parlament Ewropew appoġġat il-kandidatura ta’ Tonio Borg għal Kummissarju Ewropew. Qiesu jridu jgħidulna li għamlu hekk minkejja li kienu jafu li dik ma kienitx għażla tajba, iżda huma xorta taw l-appoġġ tagħhom, ovvjament fl-interess nazzjonali!

Fil-fatt meta d-delegazzjoni Laburista appoġġat il-kandidatura ta’ Tonio Borg (minkejja li kienet taf li dik kien proposta żbaljata tal-Gvern immexxi minn Lawrence Gonzi) imxiet kontra l-interess nazzjonali, għax l-interess ta’ Malta kien li jkollna Kummissarju differenti.  Tonio Borg minkejja l-kwalitajiet tajba tiegħu ma kienx għażla tajba għall-kariga ta’ Kummissarju Ewropew.

Bħalma l-Labour dakinnhar żbaljaw, illum jippretendu li l-iżball tagħhom jimitah kulhadd. Jippretendu appoġġ għami għal dak li jagħmel il-Gvern. Taqbel u ma taqbilx. Fl-interess nazzjonali, ovvjament.

Ma hemm l-ebda obbligu li nagħtu appoġġ lill-Gvern meta dan jiżbalja. La f’Malta u l-anqas barra minn Malta.  Hu kontra l-interess nazzjonali li tappoġġa proposti żbaljati biex tidher taparsi patrijott.

X’tagħmel il-GWU dwar il-proposta tal-Gvern dwar il-bejgħ taċ-ċittadinanza hi għażla tagħha. Il-GWU għandha kull dritt (u obbligu) li tasal għall-konklużjonjiet tagħha dwar dak li jkun għaddej. Kif jagħmel ħaddieħor. Pero’ l-President tal-GWU ma għandu l-ebda dritt jippretendi u jinsisti li d-diskussjoni ma tmurx lil hinn minn xtutna. Dak li qed jipproponi l-Gvern dwar iċ-ċittadinanza għandu, implikazzjonijiet serji lil hinn minn xtutna u għalhekk hu floku li l-Parlament Ewropew jiddiskuti l-materja f’nofs Jannar 2014.

Dak kollu li jiġri Malta qatt ma kien ta’ interess għalina biss. Iktar u iktar illum li niffurmaw parti mill-Unjoni Ewropeja. Dak kollu li jiġri f’Malta jinteressa lil kulħadd. Bl-istess mod jinteressa lilna dak li jiġri f’pajjiżi oħra ukoll, kemm dawk li pajjiżi li huma qrib tagħna kif ukoll dawk li huma iktar il-bogħod.

Per eżempju kien hemm żmien meta l-Libja, fi żmien Muammar Gaddafi, ftehmet ma Sarkozy (dakinnhar President ta’ Franza) dwar ix-xiri ta’ impjant nuklejari biex dan ikun istallat mal-kosta Libjana ħalli jipproduċi ilma tajjeb għax-xorb mill-ilma baħar. Dan l-impjant, jekk il-kostruzzjoni tiegħu jseħħ, jista’ jkollu impatt negattiv fuq Malta, iżda minkejja dan ħadd ma fetaħ ħalqu dwaru ħlief Alternattiva Demokratika. L-anqas meta l-Italja taħt Silvio Berlusconi ipprovat tibni impjant nuklejari 94 kilometru l-bogħod minn Għawdex (f’Palma di Montechiaro mal-kosta t’isfel ta’ Sqallija) ukoll ħadd ma fetaħ ħalqu f’Malta ħlief Alternattiva Demokratika. Dan minkejja l-potenzjal ta’ impatt diżastruż ta’ dan l-impjant fuq il-gżejjer Maltin.

L-interess nazzjonali dakinnhar kien jitlob li l-Gvern u l-Opposizzjoni jiftħu ħalqhom. Iżda kemm il-PN kif ukoll il-Labour dakinnhar baqgħu siekta t-tnejn. Bħala riżultat ta’ dak is-skiet dakinnhar irrenjaw l-interessi ta’ Franza, tal-Libja u tal-Italja, mhux l-interess nazzjonali ta’ Malta.

Fi ftit kliem is-skiet biss huwa kontra l-interess nazzjonali. Għandna l-obbligu li niftħu ħalqna dejjem. Nitkellmu b’mod responsabbli iva, imma mhux li nżommu ħalqna magħluq.

Hu fl-interess nazzjonali li min hu tal-fehma li l-iskema tal-bejgħ taċ-ċittadinanza proposta mill-Gvern ta’ Malta hi żbaljata jesprimi ruħu pubblikament, dejjem sakemm dan isir b’mod responsabbli. Ikun qed jimxi kontra l-interess nazzjonali min, minkejja dan, jibqa’ ħalqu magħluq. Hu biss is-skiet li jagħmel il-ħsara.

ippubblikat fuq iNews, it-Tlieta 31 ta’ Diċembru 2013

The Malta push-back to Eritrea

Flag-Pins-Malta-Eritrea

Well Malta did carry out a push-back. Once upon a time way back in 2002.

Being very eager to be populist the EFA government repatriated 220 Eritrean citizens. These ended up imprisoned and tortured.

You may wish to read through the correspondence between Amnesty International and the then Minister Tonio Borg at the following link:

http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/EUR33/002/2004/en/7d3d5d34-d5c5-11dd-bb24-1fb85fe8fa05/eur330022004en.pdf

These are the consequences.

Il-pontijiet ta’ Tonio Borg

 

Il-proċess li bih il-Parlament Ewropew eżamina n-nomina ta’ Tonio Borg kienet opportunita li tikkuntrasta l-politika ta’ gonzipn ma dik Ewropeja.

Il-politika ta’ gonzipn hi wahda ta’ konfront. Dik Ewropeja hi waħda ibbazata fuq il-kunsens.

Gonzipn jippretendi li hu jiddeċiedi u ħaddieħor ibaxxi rasu u jappoġġah. Meta jiddeċiedi jiġi jaqa’ u jqum x’jaħseb ħaddieħor.

Meta sar ir-referendum dwar id-dħul ta’ Malta fl-Unjoni Ewropeja il-PN ġustament stenna li l-Labour ibaxxi rasu għall-verdett popolari. Il-Labour dan m’għamlux u l-PN baqa’ jfakkru f’dan id-deficit demokratiku repetutament. U għamel sewwa.

Imma l-PN mhux veru jemmen dak li qal għax meta ġie r-referendum dwar id-divorzju kien diffiċli għalih li jaċċetta r-riżultat. Ma riedx ibaxxi rasu għall-volonta’ popolari.

Tonio Borg kien wieħed mill-Membri Parlamentari li minkejja r-riżultat popolari baqa’ sa l-aħħar jisfida l-verdett popolari. Kif jista’ għalhekk jitwemmen meta jgħid u jiddikjara li ma jħallix it-twemmin tiegħu ixekklu fil-qadi ta’ dmirijietu bħala Kummissarju?   Fil-każ tad-divorzju hekk għamel: mexxa skond dak li jemmen u mhux skond ir-rieda popolari.

Issa qed iwiegħed bil-maqlub.

Meta tqis kemm domna nisimgħu prietki dwar kif kellu l-obbligu li jimxi skond il-kuxjenza u mhux skond dak li iddeċieda r-referendum bil-fors jidħlu dubji serji dwar kif ser jaġixxi bħala Kummissarju.

Għalhekk il-Parlament Ewropew talab dik id-dikjarazzjoni umiljanti, għax dak li qal xorta ħalla d-dubji. Il-kliem meqjus fi tlett siegħat hearing ma ħassrux l-impatt ta’ snin ta’ ħidma politika.

Fid-dawl ta’ dan forsi issa huwa ċar iktar minn qabel li kien ikun ħafna aħjar li l-kandidat Malti għal Kummissarju Ewropew kien wieħed li dwaru kien hemm kunsens bejn il-forzi politiċi kollha. Il-fatt li intagħżel kandidat li dwaru ma kienx hemm kunsens wassal għal trattament umiljanti li seta kien evitat b’kandidat idoneju.

Issa li ġie approvat minkejja vot qawwi kontra tiegħu Tonio Borg għandu l-obbligu li jassigura li l-ħidma tiegħu tkun waħda li tħares il-valuri Ewropej u in partikolari d-drittijiet tal-minoranzi.

Id-dikjarazzjoni li Tonio Borg għamel wara l-elezzjoni li fi ħsiebu jibni l-pontijiet ma dawk li vvutaw kontra tiegħu hu sinjal pożittiv. Nittama li jirnexxilu.

Tonio Borg : lejlet il-vot

Il-Parlament Ewropew għada jivvota dwar jekk in-nomina mill-Gvern Malti ta’ Tonio Borg bħala Kummissarju Ewropew hiex waħda aċċettabbli.

Bl-appoġġ tal-Partit Popolari, l-Konservattivi, l-partiti tal-lemin (inkluż dawk ta’ Bossi u Le Pen) u numru mdaqqas mill-grupp soċjalista probabilment li jkun approvat b’mod partikolari wara d-dikjarazzjoni li iffirma. L-opposizzjoni ġejja mill-Liberali, mill-Ħodor, minn parti mis-Soċjalisti (fuq quddiem MEPs nisa u LGBT) u l-bqija tax-xellug.

Intqal ħafna dwar il-kandidatura ta’ Tonio Borg. Kull min ikkritikah għamel dan mill-ottika tiegħu.

Da parti ta’ Alternattiva Demokratika ikkritikajna n-nomina tiegħu bħala waħda li m’hiex addattata u dan in vista tal-posizzjonijiet politiċi li ħa matul il-karriera politika tiegħu. Hemm politiċi oħra li huma inqas kontroversjali u li ma ħadux posizzjoni ta’ konfront kontra l-gays u kontra d-divorzju . Il-posizzjoni ta’ Tonio Borg favur politika inumana dwar l-immigrazzjoni ġiet manifestat bl-appoġg da parti tiegħu għall-ftehim ta’ Berlusconi ma Gaddafi li bih bagħat l-immigranti lura fil-Libya għas-swat u t-tortura. Ġiet manifestata ukoll meta bagħat lura l-immigranti mill-Eritrea li spiċċaw sparixxew jew ġew ittorturati u dan kif ikkonkludew l-Amnesty International u l-UNHCR.

Filwaqt li hu floku li jingħad li matul il-hearing ta’ tlett siegħat li kellu fil-Parlament Ewropew Tonio Borg wera li kellu konoxxenza tajba tad-dikasteru  assenjat lilu naħseb li jkun għaqli li jkun emfasizzat li fi tlett siegħat ma tistax tħassar dak li tkun għamilt matul karriera politika sħiħa. Tista’ tipprova tispjega imma trid tkun konsistenti. Jekk ma tkunx ma tistax tikkonvinċi.

Matul it-tlett siegħat tal-hearing Tonio Borg impressjona li kien teknikament kompetenti. Iżda diversi li kellhom dubji dwar kemm il-passat hu mera tal-futur baqgħu bid-dubji. Għalhekk talbuh jagħmel dikjarazzjoni.

Id-dikjarazzjoni li Tonio Borg iffirma tiftaħ beraħ l-issue tal-abort. Il-PN tkaża meta MEPs mill-PL ivvutaw favur riżoluzzjoni fil-Parlament Ewropew li kellha referenzi mill-iktar indiretti għall-abort u dan fil-kuntest ta’ għajnuna lill-pajjiżi li qed jiżviluppaw. Kienu l-akkolti ta’ Tonio Borg fil-kampanja ta’ emendi kostituzzjonali dwar l-abort li fetħu l-kanuni. Issa naraw kemm huma lesti li jitkellmu fil-pubbliku dwar id-dikjarazzjoni ta’ Tonio Borg u kemm din tfisser appoġġ inkondizzjonat għall-abort fejn l-Unjoni Ewropea tista’ tagħmel dan.

Bid-dikjarazzjoni li iffirma Tonio Borg issa intrabat pubblikament li jpoġġi l-kuxjenza tiegħu fil-ġemb u jimplimenta dawk ir-rizoluzzjonijiet li ivvutaw favur tagħhom tal-Labour!

Dikjarazzjoni bħal din mhux kulħadd jagħtiha l-istess piz. Għax daqqa ta’ pinna ma tħassarx dak li temmen.

Gonzi plays chess

Lawrence Gonzi plays chess with his Cabinet colleagues. He considers them as pawns to be used when and should the need arise.

Consider Labour’s motion of no confidence in then Interior Minister Carmelo Mifsud Bonnici. Government had an alternative motion presented by PN maverick backbencher Franco Debono. Labour’s motion criticised government on policy and performance and  concluded by censoring the Minister. Debono’s motion was heavily critical of government policy and performance but did not spell out anything specific on the Minister.

If Lawrence Gonzi was after calming the waters he would have selected Debono’s motion to be discussed first in Parliament. Instead he specifically opted for Labour’s motion. He sacrificied his Minister unnecessarily presumably to gain some sympathy from supporters!

Tonio Borg is also being used by Lawrence Gonzi. Tonio Borg was nominated as EU Commissioner designate in order to vacate his post as Deputy Leader of the PN. As amply pointed out in most of the press his choice is the worst possible. His actions and utterances on civil rights and immigration are not only anachronistic, they are unacceptable in a modern democratic society. He has a lot to explain.

And to crown it all there is now the Kazakh inquiry.

Gonzi plays chess with his Ministers. They are his pawns. He uses them as part of his political gambits.

Mhux aħjar tirtira n-nomina ?

Qabel ma Lawrence Gonzi innomina lil Tonio Borg bħala Kummissarju Ewropew suċċessur Alternattiva Demokratika kienet insistiet li kien neċessarju li l-kandidat Malti jkun wieħed riżultat ta’ kunsens. Kandidat li fuqu jkun hemm qbil.

Lawrence Gonzi ma qabilx: webbes rasu u innomina lil Tonio Borg.

In-nomina ta’ Tonio Borg ma kienitx adatta għal Malta. Kienet adatta għal Gonzi għax warrablu minn Viċi Kap tal-PN.

Kuljum qed jintqalu affarijiet ġodda dwar Tonio Borg. Issa intqal li l-Parlament Ewropew qed jinvestiga materja ta’ serjeta’ kbira li fiha qed jissemma isem Tonio Borg: il-permess ta’ residenza ta’ dak li kien ħaten il-mexxej tal-Kazakstan. Il-Euractiv.com dal-għodu qaltilna : Malta’s choice for Commission faces grilling over Kazakh connection.  Din il-materja qamet ukoll dal-għodu waqt il-konferenza stampa li l-Kummissjoni Ewropeja tindirizza kuljum fi Brussels.

X’jonqos?

Mhux aħjar tirtira n-nomina ta’ Tonio Borg Dr Gonzi, qabel ma tkompli timbarazza lil Malta?

Tonio Borg: his nomination and Malta’s reputation

Stephen Calleja heads the editorial team at Standard Publications, publishers of the Malta Independent as well the The Malta Independent on Sunday.

He considers himself to be “independent” so much that he did not bat an eyelid in accepting to present a TV discussion programme on the PN political TV station NET TV: l-Iswed fuq l-Abjad. Its independence can be attested by considering his choice of speakers and his myopic consideration of the  issues discussed.

In today’s edition of the Independent on Sunday Mr Calleja speaks of “restoring Malta’s reputation” when discussing the consideration by the EU institutions of Tonio Borg’s nomination as John Dalli’s successor on the EU Commission.

Calleja’s point is that The Green’s criticism of Tonio Borg’s nomination and credentials will tarnish Malta’s reputation.

It seems that those defending Tonio Borg’s nomination, including Mr Calleja, consider that he has only one positive point, that he is Maltese and they expect all to rally behind this nomination on the basis of his nationality.

Calleja fails to give due weight that Tonio Borg has destroyed his own candidacy by his utterances and actions as a Minister. His actions on immigration  when he supported Berlusoni’s agreement with Gaddafi’s Libya to send back immigrants to Libya to be tortured is compounded by the 2002 Eritrean refugee mishap documented by Amnesty International amd UNHCR. Tonio Borg as Malta’s Minister for the Interior  was responsible for sending back Eritrean immigrants. Some were tortured others disappeared.

Tonio Borg’s utterances against tenancy rights of same sex couples during the rent reform debate in Malta’s Parliament may have been forgotten by Stephen Calleja.  Calleja may even consider as unimportant the fact that Tonio Borg defied the referendum result and opposed divorce legislation.

In view of Tonio Borg’s record as pointed out above I do not consider that his nomination was the appropriate one.

When Lawrence Gonzi, notwithstanding the above decided to proceed with Tonio Borg’s nomination he was gambling Malta’ reputation.  He should have nominated someone else. There are plenty of suitable candidates amongst Malta’s  404,000 population.

It is on Lawrence Gonzi’s doorstep that Stephen Calleja should direct his criticism. But obviously, as he is “independent” he will find considerable difficulty in doing so.

Il-Labour: jgħid ħaga u jagħmel oħra

Il-Grupp Parlamentari Soċjalista fil-Parlament Ewropew (imsejjaħ il-Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats) mhux konvint li l-Ministru tal-Affarijiet Barranin Malti Tonio Borg hu l-persuna adatta għall-Kummissarju tal-Unjoni Ewropeja. Ġie rappurtat fil-medja lokali li s-soċjalisti għandhom diffikulta’ dwar il-posizzjoni li ħa Tonio Borg dwar id-drittijiet tal-omosesswali meta l-Parlament Malti iddiskuta t-tibdil fil-liġijiet tal-kera u irrifjuta emenda imressqa mill-Opposizzjoni fil-Parlament imma iktar qabel proposta ukoll minn Alternattiva Demokratika.

Hannes Swoboda President tal-Grupp Soċjalista fil-Parlament Ewropew fi stqarrija maħruġa nhar il-25 t’Ottubru 2012 qal hekk dwar Tonio Borg:

“Regardless of the circumstances surrounding Mr Dalli’s resignation, we will look carefully into the qualifications of his proposed successor. In view of some comments from Mr Borg on the rights of homosexuals we intend to question him closely on whether his views are compatible with Europe’s fundamental values on civil liberties and non-discrimination.

“There has already been one case where the European Parliament rejected a candidate who could not convince MEPS of his readiness to accept basic European values. We do not need a second Rocco Buttiglione.”

Ma jidhirx li l-4 membri parlamentari soċjalisti Maltin oggezzjinaw għal dan. Imma f’Malta b’mod ipokritu jibqgħu jgħidu li qed jappoġġaw il-kandidatura ta’ Tonio Borg.

Bħal dejjem il-Labour jgħid ħaġa u jagħmel oħra: f’Malta jitkellem favur Tonio Borg. Barra qiegħed jappoġġa lil min jikkritikah. M’humiex kapaċi jkunu konsistenti.

Hekk kienu u hekk jibqgħu. Jagħmlu dak li jaqbel fil-mument. F’Malta jitkellmu favur il-kandidatura ta’ Tonio Borg. Barra minn Malta jilgħabuha ta’ progressivi!

Sadanittant Alternattiva Demokratika kienet ċara daqs il-kristall. Il-Grupp tal-Ħodor fil-Parlament Ewropew kif fisser Arnold Cassola, kelliemi għal Affarijiet Internazzjonali u Ewropej ta’ Alternattiva Demokratika m’huwiex konvint li Tonio Borg hu l-persuna adatta biex tkun Kummissarju Ewropew u dan minħabba l-posizzjoni tiegħu fuq drittijiet ċivili u drittijiet umani. L-issue m’hiex biss dwar il-posizzjoni ta’ Tonio Borg fuq id-drittijiet ċivili tal-gays imma ukoll fuq il-posizzjoni tiegħu dwar r-refuġjati . Il-Ħodor Ewropej huma xettiċi dwar Tonio Borg fid-dawl ta’ rapporti mill-Kummissjoni Għolja dwar ir-Refuġjati u Amnesty International.

Tonio Borg għandu ħafna x’jispjega. Jekk ma jispjegax ser ikollu ħafna diffikultajiet.

Rocco and the ghosts of Eritreia

In 2004 Rocco Buttiglione was Silvio Berlusconi’s surprise choice for EU Commissioner.  Jose’ Manuel Barroso identified him as suitable for the post of Commissioner designate for Justice, Freedom and Security.

When grilled by the European Parliament’s Civil Liberties committee  Rocco Buttiglione stated that he viewed homosexuality as a sin.  I do not think that Tonio Borg will use the same fundamentalist vocabulary of Rocco Buttiglione. He is however on record during the parliamentary debate on rent reform as being one of those opposing tenancy rights for same sex couples on a level identical to those of heterosexual couples.

A substantial number of MEPs will certainly not be amused. One Rocco is more than enough.

If this was not enough Tonio Borg will have to give account of decisions taken in 2002 on the repatriation of Eritrean asyslum-seekers. They were sent back to be tortured in Eritreia.

A 2009 report published by Amnesty International is entitled “Eritreia: sent home to detention and torture.”

The following extract from page 7 of the said report does not require any comment:

“Malta forcibly returned 230 Eritrean nationals to Eritrea in 2002. They were detained on arrival in Asmara at the Adi Abeto detention centre, accused of betraying their country, and tortured as punishment. With the exception of children, some women, and those over the age of 40, those returned from Malta are believed to remain in incommunicado detention. About 30 of them were able to escape and they fled to Sudan in 2003. Amnesty International was able to collect their testimonies about detention conditions and torture. One escaped detainee said: “There were interrogation rooms and we were being called one at a time, with two guards, one asking the questions, the other doing the beating.” The Government of Malta stated that they had not received “any evidence that any ill-treatment was afforded to the Eritreans repatriated from Malta.” However, by February 2004 they had released all remaining Eritreans to non-custodial hostels to wait for resettlement. In December 2008, Malta and Eritrea agreed to “establish diplomatic relations” with a view to increasing co-operation between the two countries. This has raised concerns that Malta might again consider forcibly returning failed or non-assessed Eritrean asylum seekers.”

Tonio Borg has a lot of explaining to do.

originally published on di-ve.com, Friday 26 October, 2012