The Malta Independent 9 March 2021, Tuesday

The heavy load

Rachel Borg Saturday, 20 February 2021, 07:09 Last update: about 17 days ago

In any other country, by now, with all the steady stream of unethical behaviour, of clear cases of corruption, of a Mafia-state, of denial of civil-society, of a blatant take-over of land and a planning authority that represents only one boss, the government, legitimate or not, would have fallen.  Perhaps with the exception of Belarus and Russia and a guerilla army operating within the territory.

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Robert Abela considers himself and his government beyond reproach whilst on a daily basis, we encounter allegation after allegation, standards reports, magisterial enquiries, cases brought before the courts and business interference to a scale never previously experienced before.

The performance put in by his predecessor Joseph Muscat and his enablers, Keith Schembri, Konrad Mizzi, Edward Scicluna, together with Ian Borg and Frederick Azzopardi, James Piscopo and others has laid the ground for the manic method now fully ingrained into the political, business and social structure of the nation, that today results in a near oppression of freedom of thought, of impunity and total disregard of accountability and responsibility.  The driving force is simply to weaken the will of the people and gain control over their choices. 

On this stage, Abela is simply the illusion of a Prime Minister.  The country hears, the country reads, it understands and can reach a conclusion that one assault after another on the rule of law, on democracy, on truth and justice, freedom and reputation is simply brushed aside, made-over by One media, ignored until it reaches the attention of international bodies and even merchandised into a commodity.

The constant repetition of information indicating a link between the political figures of the time and the persons charged in the assassination of a journalist, just left to float around in the air like some second-hand vapour from an electric cigarette.   The police calling in this person and that person but never coming forward to the public with reasons for which they are no longer pursuing those investigations and showing some accountability towards the citizens whom they are meant to serve. 

Junior Ministers simply scoffing at serious allegations that indicate inappropriate behaviour such as receiving money from a murder suspect, not declaring that money and continuing to consider it perfectly ordinary and normal that no resignation follows and it’s just private business.

Konrad Mizzi is linked to Electrogas, Vitals, Malta Air, 17 Black, Panama, Sai Mizzi’s lucrative positions in China and the Montengro Wind Farm.  The skill-set and talent that was brought to the team by Keith Schembri, was indispensable to the realization of the Labour dream. 

From the pre-1995 rental law, to land handed out to the hunters.  From agricultural and ODZ land being steam-rolled and gobbled up for widening of roads, to the complete absence of conservation of architectural and social & industrial heritage.  The resurrection of medieval contracts without any word or protection from the state for the victims who are left to fight for their property against predators.  Decisions on who gets immunity from prosecution.  Cover-ups on a regular basis. 

All of this has become normal, to the extent that even the leader of the opposition will sit and wait for facts that may or may not turn up (and which may already be there), without relying on his experience and judgement in analyzing the information available on whether mis-conduct was likely to have happened, as with the allegations of money paid to or collected by members of the PN from the same 17 Black supremo and so calling for an internal investigation to put the members mind at ease or clear the suspicions.

But in all of these muddy waters, the Labour PM struts his feathers and utters his jargon with complete comfort and faith that nothing further is required of him.  On the contrary, he gives himself praise for a good job.  Occasionally he may even throw in a disciplinary action such as the dismissal of a PL barman when he organized a dinner that breached Covid 19 rules.

The numbers of positive cases of the Covid19 virus continue to defy any decrease but still no mention is made of the gravity of the situation.  Where we were told that recovery was imminent, even the PM has had to face the stark truth and extend the wage supplements beyond March. 

The endemic lack of leadership is exacerbated by an inconsistent and low level media that more often than not holds back from confrontation.  The PN has only just started to emerge from a compromised leadership but progress is slow or not at all.  It is like trying to build a castle in the sand.

The morale of the country may be divided into the sick and tired and the let’s take a selfie brigade.  At this point we wonder if our nation still exists or if it has become nothing more than a vessel.

The low standards that are evident all around us, from the quality of work to the speaker of the House is reflected in the fall of our reputation in every sector, nationally and internationally.  The kind of behaviour seen from the ex-Prime Minister Joseph Muscat in the matter of the whistle-blower Maria Efimova is simply unacceptable by any country with a modicum of intelligence, self-respect and decency. 

The sad truth is that they get away with it.  They pride themselves on it.  They believe their own fabrications and manipulations and rest on the approval of those whose very minds they have taken over and with going along with any action that gets votes and money.

Can the country go on like this?  The world is moving on around us and we are stuck in a third world economic and political system that makes a farce out of EU membership.  As always, it will be down to the talent, investments and hard work of every individual, who strives to continue giving energy and producing wealth and value for Malta.  Luckily for us, Malta was always at the forefront in that quality.  Across the medical, economic and service industries there remains a resilient and forward-looking people who continue to aspire for high standards to deliver to international levels.  Next to this, Robert Abela’s absent-mindedness is a joke.  Not a funny one, not a helpful one but which in itself can be brushed aside with the exception of justice.

 

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