“Malta today lost the architect of Free Malta, a giant in the political history of Malta. Malta without Mintoff would not be where it is today. Our country today is an orphan now that Mintoff has passed away.”
Labour leader Joseph Muscat said this in his first reaction after Mintoff’s death was announced on Monday evening.
Dr Muscat, who had just visited Mintoff’s family at his Tarxien residence said that Mintoff died at home, surrounded by his daughters and was very serene, as he always wished. Muscat went to Tarxien to offer personally his condolences and that of the Labour Party to the Mintoff family.
Muscat said: “Mintoff’s love for his country, for the workers and foe those who created jobs knew no bounds.”
“Now after his death everyone will start talking about monuments to commemorate Mintoff. But Mintoff built a living monument to himself, a social monument. Thos who receive children’s allowance, those who receive a pension, those who go to school provided freely by the state, every woman who has equal rights with men, those who have a right to sickness benefits, every gay couple and those who cherish church-state separation, owes all this to Dom Mintoff” said Muscat.
Joseph Muscat said that Mintoff managed to put Malta on the world map. “Let us be clear: there were difficult times between Mintoff and the Labour Party in recent years. I am happy to say that I have closed that chapter and today we can mourn him shamelessly. Today we are all orphans” said Muscat.
Dr Muscat said that one of the nicest moments that he has had as leader of the Labour Party was in 2009 when Mintoff visited the Labour National Centre at Hamrun.