Recently, a Nationalist party MEP, Dr. Simon Busuttil wrote about putting ethics back into politics. Most of the points raised are relevant, although very often he chose the wrong target to substantiate his arguments. He also conveniently forgot to mention that any government should adhere to ethics compliance codes and that his GonziPN is probably unaware of any form of ethical code.
The PN government has disregarded any semblance of ethics on many occasions. It has even swung to the opposite side of unethical behavior in the Prime Minister’s vote against the people’s wishes, after having been freely expressed in a referendum, as well as in the declaration of Justyne Caruana’s vote in a Parliamentary division some time ago. Simon Busuttil should know that ethics in politics is not only a Parliamentary issue.
It is also in political policy, political writing and political speeches. GonziPN directly and indirectly through party-faithful columnists, have attacked people from both sides of the political divide in a most offensive manner. Yet neither the PN, nor for that matter Simon Busuttil, have seen anything unethical in foul and derogatory language. It is the Labour Party that showed ethical maturity by not responding to the PN provocation.
For several weeks, Dr. Gonzi prevented discussion on any bill requiring a division in Parliament to wait for the result of his one-horse race. Following the two Parliamentary votes against Government members, the Prime Minister has pretended that it was business as usual, knowing full well that he no longer has a majority in Parliament. Dr. Gonzi has said that this was an internal party matter. Where are the political ethics that Simon Busuttil talks about, especially when the votes were taken in the House of Representatives?
Dr. Busuttil also describes the motion to remove Richard Cachia Caruana as permanent representative to the EU, as a pseudo-trial. Does Simon Busuttil, a lawyer himself, believe that a decision reached by an absolute majority in the highest institution in the country, should be disregarded? Does Dr. Busuttil believe that his party’s arrogance should overrule such a clear message from the people’s representatives? If this is the case, then the meaning of ethics should be re-worded.
Dr. Gonzi has appointed Simon Busuttil as his special representative to try and bridge the gaps that GonziPN has created by forgetting about the people for the last four years. The PN is currently emphasizing the need for all party exponents to toe the party line. But it is most unfortunate that Dr. Busuttil has clouded his vision and can only repeat the PN propaganda instead of expressing himself in the way that he has been accustomed to. Political integrity is much more; it is a duty to the electorate and to the people.
Dr. Busuttil himself has stated that his party is divided and it is unbecoming of him to accuse the PL of a basic sense of ethics when he knows that his party is still in power not because of any majority whatsoever, but purely because the PN wants to cling to power at all costs. Politics is normally a necessary expression of ethics. GonziPN should have led by example and Dr. Busuttil should do some serious soul-searching before putting his party’s omissions into accusations on the Labour Party.