Il-Palazz tal-Girgenti: bejn Gvern u Partit

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Meta nhar it-Tlieta li għadda, jiena u Arnold Cassola iltqajna mas-Sur Joseph Church, il-Kummissarju Elettorali Ewlieni, tkellimna miegħu dwar il-Palazz tal-Girgenti u l-fatt li l-Grupp Parlamentari tal-Partit Laburista għamel użu minnu biex iltaqa hemm.

Għal uħud Alternattiva Demokratika qed tfettaq u tgħaġġibha. Jiena ma naħsibx li dan hu l-każ għax hemm prinċipju importanti ħafna fin-nofs: fejn hi l-linja li tissepara l-partit mill-gvern? Issa jiena konxju li hemm min mhuwiex interessat fil-prinċipji, għax għal uħud, dawn huma burokrazija żejda!

Għandu jkun hemm separazzjoni bejn il-Gvern u l-partit politku li jiffurmah, jew inkella dawn għandhom ikunu ħaġa waħda, jew kważi?  Din hi l-qalba tal-kwistjoni kollha li fil-fehma ta Alternattiva Demokratika teħtieġ li tkun ikkunsidrata battenzjoni kbira.

Il-liġi li tirregola l-finanzjament tal-partiti saret biex ikun hemm trasparenza. Saret ukoll biex tiġbed linja ċara dwar dak li jista jsir u dak li ma jistax isir, u dan permezz ta numru ta kontrolli.

Fost affarijiet oħra, l-Att tal-2015 dwar il-finanzjament tal-partiti politiċi, fl-artiklu 34 tiegħu jgħid li partit politiku ma jistax jaċċetta donazzjoni minn sorsi tal-istat. Mhemmx kif u għaliex, iżda xejn, bla argumenti jew eċċezzjonijiet.

Issa donazzjoni għal-liġi dwar il-finanzjament tal-partiti politiċi ma tfissirx biss li partit ikun irċieva għotja ta flus. Għax anke jekk jixtri jew jirċievi prodott jew servizz bi prezz ridott, partit politiku jkun qiegħed jirċievi donazzjoni, u l-valur tad-donazzjoni, fdan il-kaz tkun l-ammont li jkun tnaqqas mill-prezz jew mill-valur tal-oġġett jew servizz. Imma jekk partit politiku jirċievi prodott jew servizz bla ma jħallas xejn għalih ikun qiegħed jirċievi donazzjoni li tikkonsisti fil-valur sħiħ tal-oġġett jew servizz li jkun qed jirċievi.

Fil-kaz tal-laqgħa tal-Grupp Parlamentari tal-Partit Laburista li saret fil-Girgenti ġara preċiżament hekk. Il-Grupp Parlamentari tal-Partit Laburista ingħata servizz li kien jikkonsisti fl-użu tal-Palazz tal-Inkwiżitur fil-Girgenti biex fih jiltaqgħu, il-bogħod mill-istorbju, u allura biex il-ħidma tagħhom setgħet tagħti l-frott ippjanat. Dan is-servizz ingħata lill-Partit Laburista mill-uffiċċju tal-Prim Ministru u dan ingħata bla ħlas. Minħabba li ngħata bla ħlas jitqies li huwa donazzjoni.

Il-Prim Ministru ma għandu l-ebda seta’ jagħmel donazzjonijiet ta din ix-xorta. Huwa miżmum milli jagħmel dan minn liġi li ippreżenta l-Gvern immexxi minnu stess fil-Parlament u li daħlet fis-seħħ fl-1 ta Jannar 2016 wara li ġiet approvata. Hemm min qed jargumenta li fil-passat sar l-istess. Probabbilment li dan huwa veru. Imma issa għandna liġi eżattament biex dan ma jerġax isir. Liġi li l-Gvern (ġustament) jiftaħar biha, ħalli mbagħad ikun hu stess li ma josservahiex!

Mhiex ħaġa sabiħa li l-partit u l-Gvern ikunu ħaġa waħda. Meta dan iseħħ, l-anqas ma hu sinjal tajjeb. Ikun ifisser li wasalna fsitwazzjoni li fiha dak li hu tal-pajjiż ikun ikkapparrat mill-ftit. Hekk jibdew il-problemi l-kbar. Jibdew minn affarijiet żgħar li dwarhom jgħidulek biex ma tfettaqx imma imbagħad jinfirxu għal affarijiet ikbar.

Imma jekk ma tkunx tajt kaz fl-affarijiet iżżgħar imbagħad ikun tard wisq.

II-partit fil-Gvern jifforma l-Gvern imma hu separat u distint minnu fkull ħin.

Għalhekk għandha taġixxi malajr il-Kummissjoni Elettorali għax is-separazzjoni bejn il-partit u l-istat hu prinċipju sagrosant meta demokrazija parlamentari tkun bsaħħitha.

ippubblikat fuq Illum: Il-Ħadd 26 ta’ Frar 2017

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Joseph tweets a selfie from Girgenti

muscat-girgenti-tweet

A week ago, during a short break from a very “fruitful” meeting of the Labour Party Parliamentary Group, Joseph Muscat, the Prime Minister, tweeted a selfie. The selfie included a number of hangers-on who promptly re-tweeted Joseph’s selfie, announcing to one and all that the Labour Party Parliamentary Group was meeting at Girgenti, the Prime Minister’s official residence in the countryside.

In the tweeted selfie, standing in the front row, perched between Planning Parliamentary Secretary Deborah Schembri and Civil Rights Minister Helena Dalli stands Justice Minister Owen Bonnici, the Cabinet member who around 18 months ago piloted the Financing of Political Parties Act through Parliament  Throughout the past months, the Honourable Owen Bonnici rightly proclaimed this as a milestone. How come his own government and his own political party ignored the implementation of this milestone?

It seems that Joseph, the tweeter from Girgenti, was either not properly advised of the implications of this landmark  legislation or else ignored completely the advice he received.

On Tuesday I visited the offices of the Electoral Commission and met Joseph Church, the Chief Electoral Commissioner. Together with my colleague Arnold Cassola, I drew the attention of Mr Church to the fact that the Parliamentary Labour Party was making use of government property contrary to the provisions of the Financing of Political Parties Act. On behalf of Alternattiva Demokratika – The Green Party in Malta, we requested that Joseph Muscat and his Labour Party be investigated for acting against the provisions of the landmark legislation: Joseph Muscat for permitting the use of the Girgenti Palace and the Labour Party for accepting to use it as a venue for one of the meetings of its Parliamentary Group.

As I have already explained during a Press Conference held after the meeting with the Chief Electoral Commissioner, as well as in the daily edition of this newspaper [Girgenti: demarcation line between party and state. TMI 23 February] the use of the Girgenti Palace is deemed to be a donation, which in terms of article 34 of the Financing of Political Parties Act is not permissible to be received by a political party from the state. Joseph Muscat the Prime Minister could not grant such a donation, and Joseph Muscat the Leader of the Labour Party could not accept it.

Unfortunately, this incident communicated by tweet sends a very clear and negative message: that Joseph Muscat and his Labour Party consider themselves to be above the law. The law which they rightly described as being a “landmark legislation” was intended to apply to one and all.  Joseph Muscat and his Labour Party seem to think otherwise. In fact, the Labour Party is not even yet registered as a political party as the Electoral Commission, some months back, considered that it does not satisfy the conditions laid down in the legislation.

Some may consider that Alternattiva Demokratika is splitting hairs when raising the matter. I beg to differ, as a very basic principle is at stake: the demarcation line separating the government from the governing political party. This is what lies at the core of the complaint submitted by the Greens to the Chief Electoral Commissioner for an investigation in terms of the provisions of the Financing of Political Parties Act.

I am informed that the Electoral Commission will be meeting next Wednesday when it is expected to consider the request to investigate Prime Minister Joseph Muscat and his political party for ignoring the provisions of the Financing of Political Parties Act.  It is the moment of truth for the Electoral Commission. Eight out of nine of its members are political appointees: four nominated by the Prime Minister and another four nominated by the Leader of the Opposition. The ninth member of the Commission is the chairman, a senior civil servant.

It is time for all nine members of the Electoral Commission to stand up and be counted. As a constitutional body, it is the Commission’s duty to defend the values of a modern day parliamentary democracy. Whether it will do so is anybody’s guess. I will definitely not hold my breath.

published in The Malta Independent on Sunday : 26 February 2017

Girgenti: demarcation line between party and state

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Meeting the Chief Electoral Commissioner Mr Joseph Church last Tuesday, together with Arnold Cassola, I raised the issue of the use of the Inquisitor’s Palace at Girgenti by the Labour Party Parliamentary Group for one of its meetings.  Some may consider that Alternattiva Demokratika is splitting hairs when raising the matter. I beg to differ as a basic principle is at stake: the demarcation line separating government from the governing party.

To what extent should the affairs of the government be administered separately from those of the governing party? This is what lies at the core of the complaint submitted by the Greens to the Chief Electoral Commissioner for investigation in terms of the provisions of the Financing of Political Parties Act.

The Act to regulate the financing of political parties was introduced to ensure that party financing was subject to transparency rules. It also establishes no-go areas. Amongst other matters the 2015 legislation provides in its article 34  that political parties should not accept donations from the state. There are no exceptions to this rule.

In terms of the Financing of Political Parties Act, a donation is not just pecuniary in nature. Whenever a political party purchases a product or a service at a reduced price it would be in receipt of a donation. The quantum of the donation would be equivalent to the reduction in price of the product or service received.  On the other hand if a political party acquires a product or a service without paying its commercial price, then, the value of the donation received amounts to the full price of the said product or service.

This is exactly what happened when the Labour Party Parliamentary Group made use of the Prime Minister’s official residence at the Girgenti Inquisitor’s Palace. The Parliamentary Group received the service of a meeting place without payment. Hence its being considered as a donation.

The Prime Minister does not have the authority to make such donations. His actions in this respect are restricted by law which was presented and approved in Parliament by the government he leads and entered in force as on 1 January 2016.  Some have argued that this is not the first time that such meetings were so organised. This may be so. It is precisely for this purpose that the legislation was enacted in order to prevent its reoccurrence. One should not propose such legislation and then be the first to ignore it!

Government and the governing political party should be separate and distinct. When such distinction is not clear, even in the case of minor matters, this would be a very bad indication. It would signal that the resources of the state are not being managed appropriately. It would be wrong to ignore such signals indicating the existence of minor problems as these will, if ignored, subsequently spread to more substantial matters. It would then be too late to act.

The party in Government forms the Government of the day but should be separate and distinct from it at all times.

Hence the need for the Electoral Commission to act immediately. The separation between government and the governing political party is a basic principle in a healthy democracy.

published in The Malta Independent : Thursday 23 February 2017

L-Avukat Ġenerali għandu l-obbligu illi jispjega x’inhu għaddej

FIAU

 

Ir-riżenja ta’ Manfred Galdes li kien qed imexxi l-Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit (FIAU) bħala Direttur hi nkwetanti għax tfisser li persuna oħra indipendenti li kienet inkarigata biex tissorvelja l-governanza fiskali irriżenjat.

Alternattiva Demokratika ma taċċettax bħala veritiera l-ispjegazzjoni illi Manfred Galdes irriżenja biex jieħu impieg mas-settur privat kif ġie suġġerit mill-Ministru tal-Finanzi. Irriżenja probabbilment għax qed jara l-istituzzjonijiet nazzjonali madwaru jikkollassaw b’diversi jsiru għaġina f’idejn il-Gvern. Ovvjament jekk ser jitlaq mill-impieg mal-FIAU, dan x’imkien irid jaħdem biex jgħajjex lill-familja tiegħu. Fi ftit kliem mar fis-settur privat għax iddeċieda li jirreżenja mill-FIAU.

F’April li għadda l-Ministru tal-Finanzi kien ħabbar illi l-FIAU li tagħha Manfred Galdes kien Direttur kienet qed tivestiga l-istejjer dwar ħasil ta’ flus fil-Panama u dan b’referenza għal rapport fil-media dwar il-Kap tas-Segretarjat tal-Uffiċċju tal-Prim Ministru Keith Schembri (l-Kasco) u l-Ministru Konrad Mizzi. Minkejja li hemm indikazzjonijiet li din l-investigazzjoni ġiet konkluża m’hemmx ċertezza dwar dan avolja l-aħħar riżenja tal-Kummissarju tal-Pulizija Michael Cassar hi assoċjata wkoll ma’ din il-materja.

F’dan il-kuntest is-skiet tal-Avukat Ġenerali, li huwa wkoll ic-Chairman tal-Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit hu nkwetanti. F’dan il-mument delikat l-Avukat Ġenerali għandu l-obbligu illi jispjega x’inhu għaddej.

Political calculation or environmental principle?

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Joseph Muscat’s declaration that the Freeport Terminal will not be permitted to expand in Birżebbuġa’s direction due to its impacts on the residential community will inevitably have an effect on the Planning Authority. Viewed in the context of the recent Planning Authority decision not to approve the proposed Ħondoq ir-Rummien development, a pattern seems to be developing.

Given the fact that these two decisions are closely associated with localities that politically support the Labour Party it is still not clear whether this newly discovered sensitivity to restrict development which negatively impacts residential communities is based on political calculation or on environmental principle. This consideration is inevitable, in particular due to the report in this newspaper on 22 June that the Prime Minister had stated, in a discussion with environmental NGO Flimkien għall-Ambjent Aħjar, that he does not care about impact assessments, as residents get used to everything. As far as I am aware, the Office of the Prime Minister never corrected this report.

The Freeport Terminal debate clearly indicates that Birżebbuġa residents are determined to deliver a different message: they have had enough. During the last seven years there has been an ongoing tug-of-war between Birżebbuġa Local Council, MEPA and the Freeport Terminal Management. This has led to a number of improvements, the most important of which was the setting up of a tripartite Environmental Monitoring Committee that has served to build some bridges and to explore solutions to existing problems caused by the operation of the Freeport Terminal.

There was a time, around two years ago, when pressure was put on Birżebbuġa Local Council to drop its objections to specific operations. I distinctly remember representatives from the oil-rig repair industry  trying to convince the Council of the “benefits” that an oil-rig industry based at the Freeport Terminal could generate.

When these representatives realised that no one was convinced, an amendment to the environmental permit was forced through the then MEPA Board. To their credit, only three of the then board members understood the real issues and voted against the proposal: the two MPs (Joe Sammut and Ryan Callus) and the environmental NGO representative Alex Vella of the Ramblers Association.

The amended environmental permit would have permitted minor repairs to ships and oil-rigs berthed at the Freeport Terminal. However, after the MEPA Board meeting all hell broke loose, leading Prime Minister Joseph Muscat to disassociate himself from its decision and publicly align himself with the minority on the board opposing the changes. He then stated that he was in agreement with “his representative”, Labour MP Joe Sammut.

While the Freeport Terminal, faced with the reaction of residents, eventually relinquished the newly-acquired permit, the internal debate within the Labour Party continued, leading to the recent statement by Joseph Muscat that he is not in agreement with an expansion of the Freeport Terminal operations that would have a negative impact on the Birżebbuġa community.

Irrespective of whether it is a matter of principle or a political calculation which has led the Prime Minister to make such a statement, I submit that this is still a significant turning point that has been achieved as a direct result of Birżebbuġa Local Council’s persistent lobbying. It contrasts with the position taken by the Leader of the Opposition, who looks forward to an increase in the operations of the Freeport Terminal, without batting an eyelid over the resulting, continuously increasing, impact on the residential community.

The Prime Minister’s statement, while being a positive first step, is certainly not enough. It needs to be translated into policy as an integral part of the revised Local Plans currently under consideration. It is also important that the Prime Minister’s newly identified sensitivities are exported to other areas in Malta and Gozo. It is essential that, in a small country such as ours, third party rights opposing “development” are reinforced.

The issue at stake is far larger than Birżebbbuġa or the Freeport Terminal. It is a tug-of-war between those supporting “development” at all costs and our residential communities. The government must, through planning policy, be supportive of all our residential communities without exception.

published in The Malta Independent on Sunday – 31st July 2016

Ċapċipa għal Konrad

Konrad Mizzi Parlament

Il-bieraħ waqt laqgħa ta’ djalogu pubbliku f’Kastilja, Konrad Mizzi Ministru bla portafol fl-uffiċċju tal-Prim Ministru, ngħata ċapċipa kbira. Standing ovation qalet it-Times.

Kif tista’ tagħti ċapċipa ta’ approvazzjoni lil min ma żammx kelmtu? Lil min jiddeletta bis-segretezza u bil-ħabi? Lil min mhux biss ma jara xejn ħażin li jiftaħ kumpanija fil-Panama talli jevita ukoll li jwieġeb mistoqsijiet dwarha.

L-aqwa li Gvern li jisma’!

Fid-dawl ta’ dan kollu għalfejn noqgħodu niskantaw bil-medjokrità fil-politika Maltija?

 

Int tibża’ mill-Kasco?

Keith & Joseph

Int tibża mill-Kasco? Għax il-Partit Nazzjonalista qal li ma jibżax. Tant li għada ser jibgħat Kastilja ċekk ta’ €121,000 wara li l-Kasco bagħat ittra uffiċjali biex jiġbor id-dejn mingħand il-PN.

Hekk tajjeb, bla biża!

Il-PN ma jibżax mill-Kasco. Imma l-anqas il-Kasco ma jibża’ mill-PN.

Imma donnu x’imkien ieħor hemm min qed jibża’ sewwa. Is-Sunday Times tal-lum fil-fatt tirrapporta li hemm battalja għaddejja dwar jekk il-Kap tat-Tax Compliance Unit hux ser jibqa’ fil-ħatra. Jidher li hemm min irid ineħħieh bl-iskuża li l-kuntratt ta’ tlett snin għalaqlu. Il-Professur Edward Scicluna, Ministru tal-Finanzi, qed jirreżisti. Imma tas-Sunday Times jgħidu li minn Kastilja ma jridux jafu!

Ghax la l-Kasco ma jibżax, min qed jibża’?

 

Il-Kasco għandu bżonn mera

 

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Fuq is-sit elettroniku tal-One News, Keith Schembri, l-Kasco, hu kkwotat jgħid li l-“Partit Nazzjonalista qabeż kull limitu ta’ diċenza”. Dan qalu wara li aktar kmieni f’konferenza tal-aħbarijiet il-PN għadu jaħleb dak żvelat fil-Panama Papers.

Issa għandu jingħad li minn dak kollu ppubblikat s’issa hemm ħafna informazzjoni suspettuża li titfa’ dellijiet kbar fuq diversi persuni li ħadmu u għadhom qed jaħdmu f’segretezza kbira. In-nuqqas ta’ pubbliċità ta’ kuntratti, l-laqgħat barra l-pajjiż bla membri taċ-ċivil preżenti komplew jitfgħu iktar dell ta’ suspett in partikolari (imma mhux biss) fuq kuntratti konnessi mal-enerġija.

Imma issa jiġi l-Kasco jitkellem dwar id-diċenza.

Filwaqt li ma għandi l-ebda dubju li l-PN m’għandux skrupli f’dak li jgħid u jagħmel biex jakkwista anke l-inqas farka ta’ vantaġġ politiku, l-iżjed bniedem indiċenti fil-mument hu l-istess Keith Schembri l-Kasco. Kieku irriżenja forsi kien ikun jista’ jitkellem dwar id-diċenza!

Qabel ma jitkellem dwar id-diċenza jagħmel tajjeb il-Kasco kieku iħares ftit fil-mera.

Il-mozzjoni ta’ Marlene fuq Keith il-Kasco

marlene-farrugia

Il-mozzjoni ta’ Marlene Farrugia li pprezentat il-bieraħ fil-Parlament dwar Keith Schembri l-Kasco tindirizza n-nuqqas ta’ Joseph Muscat li  għal dawn l-aħħar għaxar ġimgħat (ta’ l-inqas), injora l-imġieba ta’ dawk ta’ madwaru.

Għax anke kieku ma issemmewx l-allegazzjonijiet dwar dak li qed jingħad li ġara bejn Keith Schembri u Adrian Hillman tat-Times, ix-xibka ta’ kumpaniji fil-Panama, l-British Virgin Islands, Ċipru u Ġibiltar minnha innifisha toħloq ħafna suspetti ta’ konflitti [eżistenti u forsi anke immaġinarji] bejn Keith Schembri l-bniedem tan-negozju u Keith Schembri ċ–Ċhief of Staff fl-Uffiċċju tal-Prim Ministru f’ Kastilja.

L-emails li ħarġu mal-Panama Papers jispjegaw ħafna. Imma dan mhux biżżejjed.

Għax avolja Keith Schembri rriżenja minn Direttur tal-kumpaniji tiegħu f’Marzu 2013, hu inevitabbli li l-fatt li hu l-azzjonist maġġoritarju f’dawn l-istess kumpaniji minn innifsu jagħtiħ influwenza kontinwa dwar kif isiru l-affarijiet fl-istess kumpaniji. Dan minkejja li ddistakka ruħu mit-tmexxija ta’ kuljum tagħhom. Tant dan hu hekk li l-Panama Papers jirreferu għal ideat dwar negozju addizzjonali [riċiklaġġ tal-iskart fl-Indja kif ukoll r-remote gaming].

L-iktar ħaġa onorevoli li seta jagħmel Keith Schembri kien li jitlaq bil-kwiet għaxar ġimgħat ilu.

Kieku għamel dan kien jevita li jinbarazza lil sieħbu Joseph Muscat. Kien jevita ukoll ħsara kbira lill-Partit Laburista.

Il-fatt li ddeċieda li jibqa’ hemm ifisser ħaġa waħda biss: li jew m’huwiex jirrealizza l-ħsara kbira li għamel (u għadu qed jagħmel) inkella li jiġi jaqa’ u jqum mill-konsegwenzi. Probabbilment li jiġi jaqa’ u jqum.

Il-mozzjoni ta’ Marlene, għal raġunijiet ta’ aritmetika sempliċi, mhux ser tkun approvata. Peró dan ma jfissirx li Joseph Muscat u l-Kabinett għandhom jibqgħu b’għajnejhom magħluqin. Hu fl-interess tal-pajjiż kollu li jiftħu għajnejhom beraħ u li jnaqqsu l-ħsara li saret u li għad tista’ ssir lill-pajjiż. Huma biss jistgħu jagħmlu dan.

Għalhekk hu importanti li Marlene ressqet il-mozzjoni. Il-ferita jeħtieġ li tidher sewwa ħalli kulħadd ikun jaf biha u ħadd ma jkollu skużi li ma kienx jaf.

Issa x’imiss …………… wara l-apoloġija ta’ Konrad Mizzi

Konrad Mizzi 101

F’Malta, l-iskandlu tal-Panama ilu għaddej minn Frar, madwar għaxar ġimgħat kontinwi. Tul dawn l-għaxar ġimgħat ħarġet l-informazzjoni dwar żewġ kumpaniji fil-Panama li għandhom il-Ministru Konrad Mizzi u c-Chief of Staff fl-Uffiċċju tal-Prim Ministru Keith Schembri magħruf bħala l-Kasco.

L-apoloġija ta’ Konrad nhar l-Erbgħa fil-Parlament kienet l-aħħar pass s’issa. Imma tajjeb li niftakru dak li ntqal matul dawn il-ġimgħat għax hemm kuntrasti interessanti.

Fil-bidu kien qed jingħad b’insistenza li Konrad ma għamel xejn ħażin.

Mument importanti kien fil-bidu tax-xahar t’April meta ħarġet l-aħbar li fil-grupp Parlamentari tal-Partit Laburista kien hemm diskussjoni imqanqla dwar l-iskandlu. Diversi Ministri u membri parlamentari insistew (bejn erba’ ħitan) li Konrad Mizzi u Keith Schembri l-Kasco kellhom jirriżenjaw.

L-aħbar ħarġet fil-pubbliku bħalma ħarġu l-ismijiet ta’ uħud minn dawk li kienu qed jinsistu għar-riżenja. Evarist Bartolo, Godfrey Farrugia u Alfred Sant tkellmu b’mod ċar fil-pubbliku li Konrad Mizzi kellu jerfa’ r-responsabbiltajiet tiegħu u jirriżenja.

Anke Edward Scicluna tkellem fil-Parlament dwar il-ħtieġa li jittieħdu deċiżjonijiet iebsa u malajr. Kulhadd jirrikonoxxi li l-fatt li dawn il-Ministri/Membri tal-Parlament tkellmu b’dan il-mod kien pass kbir il-quddiem. Kienet xi ħaġa mhux tas-soltu.

Bosta ġustament qed jistaqsu għaliex dawk fil-Partit Laburista li tkellmu favur ir-riżenja ma ivvutawx favur il-mozzjoni ta’ sfiduċja imressqa minn Marlene Farrugia. Ma naħsibx li jkun ġust li wieħed jgħid li dawn kellhom nuqqas ta’ kuraġġ. Huwa essenzjalment realiżmu politiku li wara li kellhom il-kuraġġ li jimxu kontra l-kurrent ma rnexxilhomx jaslu t-triq kollha. Irnexxilhom “biss” iwasslu lill-Partit Laburista jimxi biċċa mit-triq.

Jidher li kien hemm kompromess intern fil-Partit Laburista matul ix-xahar t’April. Dan il-kompromess hu wieħed interessanti għax bħala riżultat tiegħu  Konrad Mizzi ma baqax jgħid li ma għamel xejn ħażin, anzi talab skuża (anke jekk din kienet waħda imqanżha). Riżultat ta’ dan il-kompromess intern jidher li hemm qbil fil-partit laburista li “l-ħtija ta’ Konrad hi waħda żgħira” u allura l-kastig għandu jkun wieħed hekk imsejjaħ “proporzjonali”: għalhekk Ministru bla portafoll u riżenja minn Deputy Leader tal-Partit Laburista. Dan l-argument ċar joħroġ min-numru ta’ diskorsi li saru nhar l-Erbgħa fil-Parlament. B’mod partikolari minn Joseph Muscat u Edward Zammit Lewis.

Ċertament li mhux biżżejjed. Imma naħseb li hu pass il-quddiem għal dawk fil-grupp parlamentari laburista li għamlu rebħa żgħira li jistgħu jibnu fuqha fil-futur. Wasslu lill-partit laburista biex jaċċetta li hemm ħtija li trid tintrefa’. Dan hu mertu tal-opinjoni pubblika li ċaqalqet lill-Partit Laburista mill-egħruq.

Kif kelli l-opportunità li ngħid fuq dan il-blog diversi membri tal-grupp parlamentari laburista huma konxji li “s-skiet tal-Partit Laburista quddiem it-taħwid tal-Gvernijiet tas-snin 70 u 80 kienet raġuni ewlenija li kkundannat lill-partit għal 25 sena fl-Opposizzjoni.” Għalhekk Konrad Mizzi ġie mġiegħel jagħmel apoloġija. Għalhekk tneħħa minn Deputy Leader. Għalhekk tneħħewlu r-responsabbiltajiet diretti. Biex ta’ l-inqas il-Partit Laburista jagħti messaġġ simboliku.

Imma l-messaġġ simboliku mhux biżżejjed. Imma xorta hu pass li jikkuntrasta mac-ċaħda totali li kienet il-posizzjoni oriġinali tal-Partit Laburista.

Huwa neċessarju li d-deċiżjonijiet jittieħdu mill-ewwel u b’mod ċar.

L-ewwel pass hu dejjem tajjeb. Imma qatt ma hu biżżejjed.

Sadanittant l-iskandlu tal-Panama jibqa’ miftuħ beraħ sakemm ta’ l-inqas jirriżenjaw għal kollox Konrad Mizzi u Keith il-Kasco Schembri. Il-ħidma trid tibqa’ għaddejja sa ma naslu.