Tgħid nitgħallmu mill-iżbalji?

malta passport

Huwa ta’ sodisfazzjon li l-Gvern u l-Kummissjoni Ewropeja waslu għal ftehim dwar l-iskema ta’ ċittadinanza.

Il-bieraħ fil-għaxija tħabbar li wara diskussjonijiet kien hemm qbil li l-iskema ta’ ċittadinanza ser tkun emendata biex tinkludi l-obbligu ta’ residenza ta’ sena. Dan hu tibdil radikali għall-iskema u jagħmel l-iskema kompletament differenti.

Ser ikun hemm min jargumenta dwar jekk sena huwiex perjodu qasir. Bħal dejjem hemm argumenti validi li jiġġustifikaw attitudni bħal din. Ser jibqa’ min hu kontra l-iskema fil-prinċipju. L-istess bħalma hemm min hu tal-fehma li tul is-snin l-għoti taċ-ċittadinanza b’mod ġenerali illaxkat ħafna.

L-iżball fundamentali tal-Gvern fil-proċess kollu kien li għaġgel u dam biex fehem il-ħtieġa tal-konsultazzjoni. Il-ħin li jintuża fil-konsultazzjoni mhuwiex ħin moħli. Huwa ħin li fih tista’ tifhem aħjar kif jaħsibha ħaddieħor. Bil-konsultazzjoni, proposta tajba issir aħjar filwaqt li proposta ħażina jkollok ċans tibdilha.

Sfortunatament l-iżbalji li saru mill-Gvern u r-reazzjonijiet kultant sproporzjonati tal-Opposizzjoni, t-tnejn li huma, ser jissarfu inevitabilment fi ħsara lir-reputazzjoni ta’ Malta. Hemm bżonn li nitgħallmu minn dawn l-iżbalji.

Nistennew ħalli naraw id-dettalji tal-iskema kif emendata.

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Il-gimmick ta’ Simon Busuttil

Busuttil-Muscat

Il-ħsara lir-reputazzjoni ta’ Malta bl-iskema tal-bejgħ taċ-ċittadinanza imfassla minn Joseph Muscat u l-konsulenti tiegħu Henley and Partners hi waħda kbira.

Il-bieraħ Simon Busuttil kompla żied ma din il-ħsara billi ddikjara li ser imur il-Qorti u jippreżenta protest ġudizzjarju kontra l-Gvern u kontra Henley and Partners. F’dan il-protest ġudizzjarju Busuttil fi ħsiebu jibqa’ jemfasizza illi meta l-PN ikun fil-Gvern hu determinat illi lil dawk li jkunu xtraw iċ-ċittadinanza jeħodilhom lura.  Dikjarazzjoni ta’ din ix-xorta minn Simon Busuttil tfisser li l-PN taħt Simon Busuttil jiġi jaqa’ u jqum mid-drittijiet tal-bniedem. Simon Busuttil jaf li dak li qed jgħid ma jistax jagħmlu. Jaf li ma jistax b’daqqa ta’ pinna jħassar id-drittijiet akkwistati anke jekk għandu raġunijiet validi li minħabba fihom ma jaqbilx mal-liġi li ħolqot dawk id-drittijiet.

Din id-dikjarazzjoni ta’ Simon Busuttil hi tebgħa kerha fuq il-PN. Busuttil fil-ġimgħat li għaddew iġġustifika dan billi qal li għandu parir legali f’dan is-sens. Busuttil imissu jippubblika l-parir li qed jgħid li għandu kif diġa għamel il-Gvern meta ippubblika l-parir tal-Avukat tar-Repubblika.

Li Simon Busuttil jinsisti li l-Gvern ta’ Muscat jibdel drastikament l-iskema hu tajjeb. Li jikkompeti miegħu dwar min minnhom jagħmel l-iktar ħsara hu tal-biki.

Subsidiarity and loyalty

malta passport

The Prime Minister has a generational transformation in sight which he wants to bankroll with the monies generated by his sale of citizenship scheme. His supporters see traitors everywhere as they cannot stomach any form of criticism.

Does any EU member state have the right to introduce and implement a sale of citizenship scheme?  Government spokesmen have repeatedly stated that the Malta Government has been advised that it is in line with EU legislation. In line with the subsidiarity principle, nationality issues, we were told, are the sole and exclusive competence of EU member states.

No one is contesting that nationality issues are a national competence. In fact even Commissioner Viviene Reding made this amply clear. There is however much more to it than state competence. There is the duty to be loyal to the Union and other member states. Article 4.3 of the European Union Treaty explains this as the principle of sincere cooperation, also referred to as the loyalty principle: loyalty, that is, towards the other European Union member states.

Government has opted to milk citizenship in order to generate finance so as to be in a position to implement its electoral programme. It has excluded taxation as an option. Moreover it has reduced income tax as part of its electoral strategy in order to outwit the former government, knowing full well that this necessitated alternative financial avenues. Never did it place its plans to put citizenship on sale before the electorate for its consideration. Ethically the Labour Party cannot claim to have an electoral mandate on the matter.

The local political debate has revealed diametrically opposed positions. Government’s position is dictated by its strategy of requiring cash in order to finance its political initiatives. Time is of essence in its strategy. It cannot afford to wait for would-be investors to take initiatives of their choice. There is no direct link between the prospective citizen and the manner in which the monies he pays are “invested”. It is in fact an exercise of selling citizenship with a commitment to use the proceeds in a specific manner. The funds generated are hypothecated. A residential criterion has so far been ruled out, most probably,  as this would only serve as a delaying factor. It would delay the flow of the monies required depending on how long the residential criterion runs.

The warning shot fired by the EU Parliament is not to be discarded as the EU Parliament is the only democratically elected EU institution. Nor is Commissioner Reding’s statement  one that could be ignored. Reding has stated that:

While I am not calling for the Commission to receive legal power to determine what constitutes nationality or the rules granting it, the Commission nevertheless expects that Member States act in full awareness of the consequences of their decisions.

Our debate today shows the growing importance of these questions in a European Union where national decisions are in many instances not neutral vis-à-vis other Member States and the EU as a whole. It is a fact that the principle of sincere cooperation, which is inscribed in the EU Treaties (Article 4.3 of the Treaty on European Union), should lead Member States to take account of the impact of decisions in the field of nationality on other Member States and the Union as a whole.”

Clearly the competence of member states on issues of citizenship is not absolute. Given its impacts on all the other members of the Union in areas of national security, freedom of movement in the Schengen Area, rights to residence and employment, it stands to reason that both the EU as well as member states require consultation which apparently was not carried out.

The capping of the citizenship scheme at 1,800 passports for sale is certainly not enough. A residential condition of reasonable length is also  required as an additional and essential element. This would however be a sticking point as whilst it could render the proposed scheme less un-acceptable and in line with some of the practices elsewhere, it may fail to deliver what the Maltese Government requires on time.

It is with this in mind that the Greens in Malta have time and again called on Government to suspend the implementation of the scheme and concurrently to initiate a dialogue with Brussels. The problem at an EU level may eventually be resolved around the negotiating table. This would result in less reputational damage for Malta. A meeting called between the EU Commision and the Malta Government seems to be imminent. Hopefully matters will take a positive turn.

That would leave the political issue to be solved locally, either in Parliament or at the ballot box through a public consultation. The Prime Minister has already indicated that he is willing to submit the issue to a national consultation.  It is the decent way forward, part of our learning curve as a nation.

published in The Times of Malta, Saturday January 25, 2014

Tradituri?

are you the traitor

Diskors li qed nisimgħu dan l-aħħar dwar tradituri ma jagħmel ġid lil ħadd.

Dan hu diskors li ġeneralment qed jingħad minn persuni viċin il-Gvern tal-lum u dan b’difiża għall-kritika li qed issir, f’Malta u barra, dwar l-iskema tal-bejgħ taċ-ċittadinanza.

Nifhem li l-kritika ddarras.  Pero’ min hu konvint minn dak li qed jagħmel m’għandux ħtieġa ta’ insulti, iżda hu kapaċi jwieġeb argument.

L-użu tal-kelma “tradituri” fil-konfront  tal-kritiċi tal-Gvern l-iktar li tagħmel il-ħsara hu lill-Gvern innifsu għax twassal il-messaġġ li dawk li jappoġġaw lill-Gvern (jew parti minnhom) huma intolleranti għall-kritika.

Fuq kollox għalkemm huwa l-Gvern (bis-saħħa tal-maġġoranza li għandu fil-Parlament) li jiddeċiedi, ma jfissirx li neċessarjament illi għandu raġun. In-numri jiddeterminaw min jiddeċiedi, mhux min għandu raġun.

Il-kritika lill-Gvern tal-lum saret u tibqa’ issir, bħalma saret lill-Gvern tal-bieraħ. Iċ-ċavetta biex nimxu l-quddiem hi li lkoll niftħu widnejna beraħ biex nisimgħu iktar. B’dan il-mod biss hemm iċ-ċans li jsiru inqas żbalji, mhux bl-insulti.

L-insulti huma l-għodda esklussiva ta’ min m’għandux fiduċja fir-raguni.

ippubblikat minn iNews it-Tnejn 20 ta’ Jannar 2014

L-iskema taċ-Ċittadinanza ta’ Joseph Muscat: il-kobba tkompli titħabbel

Malta+EU

Il-kobba tal-iskema tal-bejgħ taċ-ċittadinanza qed tkompli titħabbel.

Il-Gvern iddeċieda. Ikkonsulta ruħu, prinċipalment wara li kien ġja ħa d-deċiżjonijiet.

Il-ħsieb li għandu l-Gvern hu wieħed ċar ħafna. Għandu bżonn il-flus biex jiffinanzja il-programm politiku tiegħu. Wara li rabat idejh li ma jżidx taxxi, kif ukoll wara li daħal fi sqaq billi naqqas it-taxxa tad-dħul meta l-pajjiż ma kienx ippreparat għal dan, ma kienx baqa’ wisq fejn idur. Iddeċieda li s-sors tal-finanzjament meħtieġ ser ikun id-dħul mill-bejgħ ta’ madwar 1,800 passaport. Dħul li hu ikkalkulat li jammonta għal madwar €1.20 biljun.

L-argumenti politiċi f’Malta instemgħu għal darba, tnejn u iktar. Kulħadd qal tiegħu, iżda l-Gvern wara li bidel xi dettalji tal-iskema, jidhirlu li għandu jibqa’ għaddej.

Mhux ċar jekk dan il-ħsieb dwar il-bejgħ taċ-ċittadinanza żviluppax mill-elezzjoni lil hawn jew inkella jekk ġiex ikkristalllizzat qabel l-elezzjoni ġenerali. Saru kitbiet diġa f’dan is-sens u hemm min spekula li l-pjan sar qabel l-elezzjoni, iżda nżamm mistur. Qed tiċċirkula l-ideja li l-Partit Laburista (u per konsegwenza l-Gvern iffurmat minnu) qiesu obbligat li jimplimenta din l-iskema. Qiesu jrid jonora xi ftehim milħuq. S’issa dan għadu mhux ċar għax ovvjament ħadd m’hu ser jikxef x’ġara, għalmenu għalissa.

Issa bdiet tiżviluppa fażi oħra tal-istorja. Il-mistoqsija hi dwar jekk il-Gvern Malti (u kwlaunkwe Gvern ieħor fl-Unjoni Ewropeja) għandux id-dritt assolut li jiddeċiedi dwar iċ-ċittadinanza. Minn dak li qalet il-Kummissarju Viviane Reding nhar il-Ħamis hi u tiftaħ id-dibattitu fil-Parlament Ewropew l-Unjoni Ewropeja hi tal-fehma li d-dritt li tkun irregolata ċ-ċittadinanza m’huwiex dritt assolut tal-istati membri. Reding qalet hekk:

While I am not calling for the Commission to receive legal power to determine what constitutes nationality or the rules granting it, the Commission nevertheless expects that Member States act in full awareness of the consequences of their decisions.

Our debate today shows the growing importance of these questions in a European Union where national decisions are in many instances not neutral vis-à-vis other Member States and the EU as a whole. It is a fact that the principle of sincere cooperation, which is inscribed in the EU Treaties (Article 4.3 of the Treaty on European Union), should lead Member States to take account of the impact of decisions in the field of nationality on other Member States and the Union as a whole.”

Fi ftit kliem il-Kummissarju Reding qed tgħid li f’dak li nagħmlu bħala pajjiż irridu ta’ bil-fors nagħtu każ tal-impatti fuq il-pajjiżi l-oħra membri tal-Unjoni. Hi tirreferi għall-artiklu 4.3 tat-trattat dwar l-Unjoni u speċifikament dwar il-prinċipju ta’ kooperazzjoni sinċiera, xi drabi imsejjaħ ukoll il-prinċipju ta’ lejalta’. Dan kollu jfisser ħaġa waħda biss: li għandna d-dritt li niddeċiedu kif irridu sakemm ma neffettwaw lil ħadd. Jekk id-deċiżjoni tagħna bħala pajjiż teffettwa lil ħaddieħor għandna l-obbligu li nikkonsultaw. Iktar ma hu kbir l-impatt iktar irridu nikkonsultaw u allura iktar hu diffiċli li nikkonkludu kif irridu.

Iktar ċari minn hekk l-affarijiet ma jistgħux ikunu!

Issa hawn min qed isemmi skemi f’pajjiżi oħra li jixxiebħu mal-iskema tal-Gvern Malti. Euroactiv.com   iktar kmieni din il-ġimgħa jirreferi għal dokument iċċirkulat fi Strasbourg mill-Gvern Malti li fih jirreferi għal skemi f’pajjiżi oħra dwar ċittadinanza : “Cyprus, Austria, Belgium and Portugal singled out” jgħidilna l-Euroactiv.com. L-iskemi l-oħra huma differenti, ghax prinċipalment huma ibbażati fuq residenza flimkien ma investiment sostanzjali. Tnejn mill-pajjiżi imsemmija (Ċipru u l-Portugall) għandhom ukoll problemi finanzjarji kbar.

S’issa jidher li l-Unjoni Ewropeja ma ikkummentatx dwar dan kollu imma jidher li issa ser tieħu passi. Il-każ ta’ Malta hu l-iktar sfaċċat imma l-każi l-oħra jixxiebħu u probabbilment li l-Unjoni  tikkummenta dwarhom ukoll.

Dan hu l-pass li jmiss. Minn kif tkellmet il-Kummissarju Reding jidher li d-diskusjsoni interna saret u l-ideat huma ċari. Ħames xhur oħra tiġi fi tmiemha l-ħajja tal-Kummissjuni preżenti u allura nistenna li fil-ġimgħat li ġejjin (ferm qabel ma jinbiegħ l-ewwel passaport),  inkunu nafu x’ser tagħmel il-Kummissjoni.

Il-Gvern jidher li ma kienx ippreparat għal dak li ġej. Kuntrarjament għal dak li qed jingħad il-vot tal-Parlament Ewropew għandu sinfikat kbir. Mhux biss huwa dikjarazzjoni politika qawwja. Imma jiftaħ għajnejn Muscat li l-unika appoġġ li għandu huwa ta’ politiċi bħal Marine Le Pen!

Le Pen

Il-messaġġ tal-Kummissarju Viviane Reding

Viviane Reding

Id-dibattitu fil-Parlament Ewropew dwar l-iskema ta’ ċittadinanza li qed jipproponi l-Gvern ġie u mar.

Kien hemm numru ta’ diskorsi. L-iktar importanti minn dawn, fl-opinjoni tiegħi, kien id-diskors tal-Kummissarju Viviane Reding, Viċi President tal-Kummissjoni Ewopeja u Kummissarju għall-Ġustizzja.

Deċiżjoni dwar iċ-ċittadinanza, qalet Reding, hi prerogattiva tal-istati membri. Imma, żiedet tgħid Reding, din id-deċiżjoni hi mhiex waħda newtrali. Għandha impatt fuq kull wieħed mill-pajjiżi l-oħra tal-Unjoni Ewropeja u dan għax iċ-ċittadinanza ta’ pajjiż membru tal-UE tagħti numru ta’ drittijiet li jistgħu jkunu eżerċitati fl-Unjoni Ewropeja kollha.

Għal din ir-raġuni l-Kummissarju Reding ġibdet l-attenzjoni ta’ kull min kien qiegħed jisma’ li t-trattat tal-Unjoni Ewropeja jitkellem ċar fl-artiklu 4.3 dwar it-tħaddim tal-prinċipju ta’ kooperazzjoni sinċiera bejn l-istati membri tal-Unjoni Ewropeja.

Dan, qalet Reding hu prinċipju bażiku. Fi ftit kliem din hi l-qalba tal-kwistjoni kollha.

Meta wieħed iwarrab il-paroli kollu li ntqal għall-gallarija, jibqa’ biss dan il-punt. Punt li kulħadd injora.

Fit-twettiq tal-politika tiegħu taċ-ċittadinanza għaliex ma kienx hemm konsultazzjoni bejn il-Gvern Malti u l-Unjoni Ewropeja? Huwa konxju l-Gvern Malti illi filwaqt li għandu kull dritt li jiddeċiedi xorta għandu l-obbligu li japplika l-“prinċipju ta’ kooperazjoni sinċiera”?

Dan hu wieħed mis-sisien tal-valuri Ewropej. Fl-Unjoni Ewropeja m’hemmx biss drittijiet. Hemm ukoll id-dmirijiet. Mhux għal Malta biss, sintendi!

ippubblikat fuq iNews il-Ġimgħa 17 ta’ Jannar 2014

The Citizenship debate: a case of being trapped ?

trap

The issue of citizenship has been rightly described as being one of the areas which are reserved for the member states of the European Union. It logically follows that Malta (and every other European state) has the right to act. This line of thought is also reinforced by the principle of subsidiarity.

No one contests this except that it is not the end of the story.

Viviane Reding, EU Justice Commissioner has placed the matter in its proper perspective by pointing out that EU member states are also bound by the principle of sincere cooperation enshrined in article 4.3 of the Treaty of the European Union. This principle is also known as the loyalty principle.

In the Citizenship debate Malta is apparently entrapped between the subsidiarity principle and the loyalty principle. The former gives it the right to act. The latter points towards the duty to cooperate.

This is the warning announced loud and clear yesterday by EU Justice Commissioner Viviane Reding in the European Parliament.

Its about time that Prime Minister Joseph Muscat realizes the extent of the mess created. Time to start thinking Joe!

Fil-Parlament Ewropew : Joseph u l-bejgħ taċ-Ċittadinanza

Joseph Muscat + Alfred Sant

Ħadd ma għandu jkun sorpriż li l-iskema tal-bejgħ taċ-ċittadinanza kif proposta minn Joseph ser tkun diskussa mill-Parlament Ewropew.

Prattikament il-partiti kollha fil-Parlament Ewropew iridu l-spjegazzjonijiet. Dan jgħodd ukoll għas-soċjalisti fil-Parlament Ewropew.

Hu ċar għal kulħadd li huma l-Gvernijiet nazzjonali li għandhom il-poter li jiddeċiedu materji dwar iċ-ċittadinanza. Imma huwa daqstant ieħor ċar li f’dak kollu li għandu impatt fuq il-pajjiżi l-oħra membri tal-Unjoni kull Gvern għandu l-obbligu li joqgħod lura.

Il-bejgħ taċ-ċittadinanza Maltija qed tiġi reklamata minn Henley and Partners, konsulenti u aġenti tal-Gvern Malti, bħala x-xiri ta’ aċċess liberu fiż-żona Schengen. Huwa dan li qed inissel tħassib fid-diversi pajjiżi membri tal-Unjoni Ewropeja.

Membri Parlamentari Ewropej, kif ukoll diversi Gvernijiet Ewropej, qed jistaqsu dwar xi dritt għandu l-Gvern ta’ Malta li jagħti dan id-dritt ta’ aċċess lil min jixtri ċ-ċittadinanza.

M’hemmx tweġiba faċli. Imma żgur li ser jinqalgħu diffikultajiet mhux żgħar għax ħadd ma jrid li min jista’ jidħol f’pajjiżu jiddeċidieh pajjiż ieħor. Din hi l-problema li ħoloq Joseph Muscat. Qed jassumi li hu u l-Gvern Malti għandhom xi dritt li jiddeċiedu li jagħtu permess lil numru ta’ ċittadini ta’ pajjiżi barra mill-Unjoni Ewropeja biex ikunu jistgħu jidħlu meta u kif iridu fl-Unjoni Ewropeja. U dan bi ħlas ta’ €625,000.

Din ħadd m’hu ser jaċcetta li issir.

Dan hu l-qofol tad-diskussjoni ta’ Jannar li ġej fil-Parlament Ewropew.

The citizenship bubble of Malta

Malta golden passport 1

Many issues are involved in the citizenship debate.

The government clearly considers Maltese citizenship as just another commodity, which it can milk. Initially it even removed the transparency rule from the statute book, which rule ensured the publication of the names of all those who acquired Maltese citizenship.

Whereas local public opinion was completely ignored, the Labour government reacted to the international media coverage by announcing that it will reverse its ditching of transparency. Yet its reaction may be too late as the damage done to Malta’s reputation is not easily reversed.

The international media queried the unconventional methods used to generate the finance required by the Maltese state.

Within EU circles it is clear that issues concerning citizenship are a competence reserved to member states. Yet the  Schengen dimension of EU citizenship cannot be ignored.

The citizenship scheme is attractive because, through it, the prospective citizen attains freedom of movement within the EU.

It is a very serious concern which can only be adequately addressed if the due diligence process is foolproof.

The problem is that, to date, the Maltese Government has already signalled that it is not that much concerned by the impact of persons who are associated with a fraudulent past, a case in point being government advisor Shiv Nair who is listed permanently on the World’s Bank blacklist.

Another recent example is China Communications Construction Company Limited, also on the World Bank blacklist. This Chinese Company will carry out (gratis) the feasibility study for a Malta-Gozo bridge on the basis of the very friendly relations between the two republics, we were told. (I had the impression that countries had no friends, they just have interests!)

This follows the earlier selection of Lahmeyer International as an advisor to the Gonzi Government. Lahmeyer International too was on the World Bank’s  blacklist.

Past performance indicates that due diligence is not an area in which the Republic of Malta has excelled.

Is it a sale or is it an investment? In fact it is a bit of both. It is surely an unconventional way of raising finance. Its major characteristic is that it focuses on the short term benefits and ignores the long term impacts.  The selling price can give immediate results: it can finance the start-up of specific projects. Whether these will be successful is another matter altogether. The impacts of an investment scheme will take more time, its a long term exercise.

The method of payment selected for the purchase of citizenship is clearly based on the St Kitts and Nevis model in the Caribbean.  In St Kitts and Nevis, payment for citizenship is received by the Sugar Industry Diversification Foundation and, subsequently, invested. The investment made is not at the discretion of the applicant for citizenship but a decision by the country dishing out the citizenship.

Public opinion considers that citizenship should be acquired through establishing solid roots in the country. Establishing minimum residence criteria and committment to the economic development of Malta through investment and job creation are essential criteria to be linked to the award of economic citizenship.

Government has done well, even though late in the day, to declare that it will reverse its secrecy stance. The declaration by Deputy Prime Minister Louis Grech that the regulations being drafted to implement government’s proposal will ensure that the names of those granted citizenship under the new legislation are public is welcome. This new position adopted by the government links with and reinforces the public committments made on the need for more robust due diligence.

It is, however, clear  that regulations alone will not suffice to entrench transparency in the citizenship scheme.  Amendments will also be necessary to the main legislation, in particular to remove reporting restrictions imposed by Parliament on the regulator.

The citizenship debate was also characteristed by the radical position taken by the Nationalist Party that, once back in office, it would not only take steps to scrap the new citizenship scheme but that it would, moreover, withdraw citizenship granted under the provisions of the scheme.

The Attorney General has advised the government that the PN’s proposal would be unconstitutional and would infringe human rights. Such advice was confirmed by the Dean of the Faculty of Law and by constitutional expert Ian Refalo.

The PN has declared that it is in receipt of legal advice reinforcing its position on the withdrawal of citizenship granted.

Whilst the Prime Minister has published the advice received from the Attorney General, the Leader of the Opposition has failed to follow suit. The Leader of the Opposition needs to be consistent. He cannot chastise the government for being secretive whilst simultaneously withholding important information from the public. It is not just the government which needs to be transparent.

The availability of both government and opposition to meet and discuss possible modifications to the citizenship scheme is welcome. Hopefully the wider national interest will prevail.

published in The Times Saturday, 23 November 2013

Id-demokrazija tal-Labour …………… bit-telefon ta’ Joseph

telphone 3

Id-deċiżjoni tal-Gvern li jneħħi l-obbligu mill-liġi taċ-ċittadinanza illi jkunu ippubblikati l-ismijiet tal-persuni kollha li jingħataw iċ-ċittadinanza għamlet ħsara kbira lill-pajjiż.

Il-ħsara saret mid-deċiżjoni innifisha u min-nuqqas tal-Gvern li jkun sensittiv għall-opinjoni pubblika f’Malta stess. Ħsara li ġiet riflessa fil-kummenti fil-media internazzjonali.

Il-kritika li saret fil-pubbliku minn diversi kien obbligu. Kien nuqqas tal-Gvern li injora din il-kritika għax dehrlu li kellu s-saħħa li jirrombla minn fuq kulħadd.

Issa l-Gvern iċċaqlaq. Louis Grech Deputat Prim Ministru qal li ċempillu l-Prim Ministru Joseph Muscat u qallu bil-posizzjoni l-ġdida.

Possibli li l-Partit Laburista jaċċetta dan il-mod kif jittieħdu d-deċiżjonijiet? Dan hu l-mod kif jiddeċiedi il-Labour? Jiddeċiedi Joseph u jikkomunika d-deċiżjoni  tiegħu bit-telefon. Possibli li dan hu l-livell ta’ diskussjoni politika fil-Partit Laburista?

Sal-lum jiena kont qed inqis li l-liġi taċ-ċittadinanza hu kaz ta’ġudizzju politiku (tal-Labour) żbaljat. Imma issa jidher li hu ħafna agħar minn hekk. Donnu li fil-Labour Party ta’ Malta wieħed jiddeċiedi u l-oħrajn ibaxxu rashom wara li jirċievu telefonata.

Il-ħsara li saret hi kbira. Hu ċar kif il-Labour jiddeċiedi: bit-telfon. Imma agħar minn hekk ġiet imtappna r-reputazzjoni ta’ Malta. Din hi ħsara kbira li l-effetti tagħha għad irridu inħossuhom.