Government is spending millions of euros to build a new parliament showing that it has wrong priorities as that money could have been spent to make life better for our people. Parliament should be much more than an empty shell. It has an indispensable role to play in a democracy which government has largely ignored.
While it is spending millions building a new parliament it has been busy demolishing the existing one in the way it has tried over and over again to avoid parliamentary scrutiny. That was the whole point about the motion that parliament passed last Monday calling for the resignation of Richard Cachia Caruana.
Establishing the National Interest is the prerogative of Parliament and not of any public official. In his testimony during the sitting of the European and Foreign Affairs Committee the Prime Minister tried to justify government’s actions in by-passing parliament to reactivate Malta’s membership of Partnership for Peace (PfP). The PL
This was not an issue about the PfP. That has been resolved and the PL is satisfied with the way it has developed. The real issue was to scrutinise the actions of a politically appointed senior government official and for Parliament to know why it was never informed about delicate and important matters that have a serious effect on the country.
Labour leader Joseph Muscat had said: “We will not accept a power system that considers itself above parliament and the people and we will ensure that this applies for everyone.” He said that in the last 25 years Nationalist MPs changed but there was one person who has always been there at the core of the PN system who has finally spoken in public.”
Muscat also said that if Malta’s EU representative had problems accessing NATO documents, he should have come to parliament to discuss the matter but he did not.
Last Monday the majority of MPs wanted to give parliament its role in a democratic society. MP Jesmond Mugliett said after the vote: "The way how I voted on Monday was motivated solely by my conviction that Parliament deserves greater respect in the way when and how matters of national importance are discussed, such as membership of Partnership for Peace (PfP).”
He added that the PfP membership decision was not part of the PN electoral programme. “It would have been better if, instead of a hurried decision, the issue was debated in the House. As had resulted, had a debate been held in the House, there would have been consensus. But instead of choosing a manner which would have united the people and respected parliament, a way which raised doubts and questions was chosen.”
That was the whole issue.