Discussing and following politics has always been part of my daily routine and since I became a candidate for the Nationalist Party, many people including my closest friends, enjoy discussing politics with me. While I am not complaining, I feel the need to address a recurring comment made by many: “The Nationalist Party and the Labour Party are exactly the same – they are cut from the same cloth.”
Most people seem to feel that politicians from both parties are letting us down. I strongly disagree. While both parties might have found themselves in the same boat, that is Malta and its political shenanigans, they are certainly not the same. The reason is simple enough – our current Prime Minister, Joseph Muscat promised a change; people voted for said change, he won this election on said change, but promises of said change were not kept.
Of course, one may argue that the lack of change still makes Labour and the PN the same and that our current Prime Minister is simply stuck to the ways of the previous administration. This reasoning worries me because it means that as a society we are now accepting that it is OK to make promises to win an election and then not to deliver.
It means that we are OK to live with low or no standards and to base our decisions on favours and not rights. This way of running a country is a far cry from democracy. The reasons why I believe that the two parties are not the same are the following.
The PN is doing a great job in Opposition, ensuring no stone is left unturned. It is a party constantly questioning and asking for answers. This is not because the mood is negative but because people should, and must know, what this corrupt government is up to.
It is unacceptable that we are faced with so many scandals and given that these are only the scandals that come to the surface, only God knows what else is going on under the covers.
The PN is not just about criticising. It does a fair bit of this of course, because it’s the Opposition’s job to do so, but the party is doing so much more.
It is preparing the way forward. It is, to an extent, doing what this government should be doing. It is putting forward many proposals such as the pre-budget document, and proposing laws, such as the Bill to amend the Constitution and to establish the Judicial Services Appointment Authority.
The party is about standards. Our Prime Minister promised us the best cabinet that Malta will ever have. Really? Here’s a quick reminder about the people that make up the so-called ‘super’ cabinet: Manuel Mallia – resigned; Michael Falzon – resigned; Konrad Mizzi – he has yet to deliver the power station that he promised; Helena Dalli – does not know the difference between a promise of sale and a deed of sale – another scandal; Anton Refalo – scandal;
Owen Bonnici – breaches the Constitution; Joe Mizzi – not quite sure why hehas not been fired yet – he told us to plan our journeys better when he shouldbe the one coming up with solutions to traffic problems.
In summary, the definition of standards seems to have gone AWOL from our Prime Minister’s vocabulary and to make matters worse, his government seems to be on a delayed action mode, only reacting after things happen. People want a proactivegovernment and one that stops making these unforgivable mistakes.
Zero tolerance to corruption – this is fundamental and cannot be compromised. The PN is under a new leadership. Simon Busuttil is determined to wash away corruption from Malta. Let us be clear that this will not happen overnight as unfortunately it is very much instilled in our society. However, we must start from somewhere and the PN under new leadership and with a good number of credible candidates can do this once it is given the chance.
If we want to talk about change, this is the true change. Hard to believe? Then consider this – people gave Muscat a chance – he failed, so giving a chance to the alternative is to me the most obvious way forward.
Labour missed the boat. I’m sure that whatever magic wand this government will wave to make it better over the next two years and to make us forget all the blunders, it will not work, because many of us refuse to be fooled.
I must admit that despite the fact that I voted for the Nationalists in the last election, I was keen to see what this government had to offer. If I were in their shoes I would be kicking myself for not taking this fantastic opportunity. After all those years in opposition, not to go out and show the world what a great change you could offer is sacrilegious.
So no, the Nationalists are definitely not cut from the same cloth as Labour. They may not have the bigger sails on their boat right now but I am sure that the sails they do have are cut from a different material all together, that they are sailing in the right direction, and are in the process of getting to the right destination – in government.