Jekk il-budget ma jkunx approvat

petrol_pump

Bosta qed jistaqsu: x’jiġri jekk il-budget ma jkunx approvat?

M’hux sewwa qed jgħidu oħrajn li fil-waqt li t-taxxi l-ġodda l-Gvern qed jiġborhom mill-ewwel il-benefiċċji irridu nistennew dwarhom.

Ir-risposta insibuha f’Liġi imsejħa Att dwar il-Protezzjoni tal-Erarju.

Fis-subartiklu (1) tal-artiklu 2 ta’ din il-Liġi insibu dawn il-kelmiet :

“Kull meta Ministru jagħti avviż lill-Iskrivan tal-Kamra tad-Deputati ta’abbozz ta’ liġi dwar dazju ġdid jew dwar żieda ta’dazju li ġà jkun hemm, dak id-dazju ġdid jew dik iż-żieda ta’ dazju għandhom jittieħdu u jinġabru, minn dik l-awtorità li tiġi stabbilita fl-abbozz bħala responsabbli għall-ġbir relattiv minn dak in-nhar li tinħareġ Proklama biex tgħarraf li ħareġ avviż kif imsemmi qabel.”

Din il-Liġi kienet ġiet introdotta fl-1928, jiġifieri meta fil-Gvern kien hemm Gerald Strickland tal-Partit Kostituzzjonali Prim Ministru f’koalizzjoni (Il-Compact) mal-Partit Laburista immexxi minn Pawlu Boffa.

L-Att V tal-1928 kien ġie introdott biex jiġi evitat li jkun hemm l-ispekulazzjoni meta tkun introdott xi dazju jew taxxa ġdida. Għax mingħajr din il-liġi hemm il-periklu tal-ispekulazzjoni kif ukoll ta’ attivita’ li tevadi d-dazju jew it-taxxi. Għax jekk bejn meta titħabbar dazju jew taxxa ġdida jew miżjuda u meta tibda tinġabar jista’ jkun hemm min, per eżempju, jixtri petrol jew diesel b’sisa baxxa u mbagħad jerġa’ jbiegħu meta togħla s-sisa u jdaħħal fil-but id-differenza.

Naħseb li lkoll naqblu li abbuż bħal dan m’għandux isir.

Imma imbagħad il-liġi taħseb ukoll x’jiġri jekk il-budget (jew il-liġi li tintroduċi t-taxxa jew dazju) ma jkunx approvat.

Is- subartiklu (1) tal-artiklu 3 jitkellem ċar ħafna u jgħid hekk :

“Kull somma li tinġabar minn dak id-dazju ġdid jew minn dik iż-żieda ta’ dazju għandha tinżamm b’depożitu u għandha titħallas lill-erarju wara li l-abbozz tal-liġi jiġi approvat għal kollox, jew tingħata lura lid-depożitant, kollha jew biċċa minnha, jekk l-abbozz ma jgħaddix jew jekk id-dazju kif propost jiġi mnaqqas, jew jekk l-abbozz ma jgħaddix fi żmien sitt xhur mill-ewwel laqgħa tal-Kamra tad-Deputati.”

Mela l-Gvern għandu sitt xhur ċans. Jekk sa sitt xhur iI-budget, jew il-liġijiet li jimplimentaw il-budget, ma jkunx approvat ikun irid jirrifondi t-taxxi li ġabar lura.

Hemm ukoll il-possibilta’ l-Gvern ikollu jħallas ukoll l-interessi. Imma dak dettall legali li jmur lil hinn mill-iskop ta’ dan il-blog.

Nota : l-kelma dazju tinkludi kull taxxa, immaterjalment x’tissejjaħ.

Dom: a giant surrounded by pygmies

Much has been written in the past days on Dom Mintoff. On his service to the nation. On his values. On his methods. On his achievements.

In what we write we ought to be respectful. Not just to Dom, the man and his memory. We must also respect  ourselves. We must be factual.

We cannot respect the man  if we have no self respect!

His first positive contribution was in the development of the tools of  social solidarity,  determined to ensure that all had access to the basic essentials. He did this initially with Sir Paul Boffa his predecessor as Labour Leader. It was Boffa who laid the foundations of the welfare state through the introduction of Old Age Pensions and Income Tax to finance them!  Years earlier Boffa had prodded Gerald Strickland through the Compact to construct St Luke’s Hospital.  Boffa has been sidelined in the past 50 years when in reality it was he who should get the credit for founding the welfare state in Malta. Dom built on Boffa’s solid foundations, widening and deepening social services in the process.

His second positive was his determination that independence be translated into Maltese absolute control of the islands and their strategic infrastructure. This contrasted with Borg Olivier’s more gradual approach.  His negotiations shocked the nation as it was the first time that a Maltese politician stood up and spoke what they had in mind. In his last mass meeting before the 1971 general elections, held  at Marsa,  Mintoff had stated in very clear terms what he had in mind. It was time for Britain to pay up or pack up.

Lord Carrington then Defence Secretary in Edward Heath’s Cabinet states in his memoirs that negotiating with Dom was tough business. He realised “that there was also calculation in every Mintoff mood.”  Mintoff’s moods noted Carrington, would alternate “between periods of civilised charm and spasms of strident and hysterical abuse.”

Dom also opened a third front. He rightly felt the need for a separation of Church and State. It was, and still is  an area which requires much attention. It was much worse 50 years ago with an unelected archbishop-prince wielding political power unwittingly aiding  the colonial masters. Divide and rule was the British policy in its colonies. This front has been the cause of various scars (political and social), still not sufficiently healed.  It was violence from unexpected quarters which multiplied the political problems which each government has had to tackle since.

In his endeavours Dom was undoubtedly influenced by his direct experiences.  His witnessing of abject poverty during his childhood, his youth and immediate post war years formed his vision for developing the welfare state which had been painfully plotted by Sir Paul Boffa.

Having a foreign power controlling any square metre of significance on the islands was too much to bear for someone with Dom’s temperament. His father’s employment in the service of Lord Louis Mountbatten undoubtedly added to the significance of it all and to his determination to make a clean sweep.

It would be dishonest to ignore the above.

It would be however similarly dishonest to ignore the fact that his stewardship was also characterised by arrogance and bullying. It was characterised by organs of the state which sought to protect abusive behaviour. The long list of cases wherein Dom’s government and his most trusted Ministers were found guilty of infringing human rights is there for all to see. None of them was ever forced to resign. This is also part of Dom’s contribution to the development of  post 1964 Malta.

Anyone ever tried to identify the number of victims, some with a one way ticket to l-Addolorata Cemetery?

Former Air Malta chairman Albert Mizzi in an interview carried in The Sunday Times on March 25, 2012 stated: “I remember one time when someone mentioned something to him about corruption. He turned to me and said, ‘is it true?’ I replied: ‘That what’s people are saying’. His response was: ‘What can I do if that person has helped me to build up the party? Can I take action against him?’ You see, this is small Malta.”

That is Dom, the giant surrounded by pygmies: those who helped him build his party and then proceeded to squeeze it dry until the pips squealed.

Respecting Dom also means self-respect. Respect  the facts.  When this is done we can give the man his due.

originally published at di-ve.com

On this blog you can read the following additional posts on Dom MINTOFF :

21st August 2012 : Dom’s legacy

21st August 2012 : Dom Mintoff

22nd June 2012 : Dom Mintoff fuq in-Net TV.

5th May 2012 : Dom Mintoff : a political bully.

23rd April 2012 : Thanks O Lord for giving us DOM.

1st April 2012: Should we thank Dom?