The Malta Independent 27 November 2021, Saturday

Record growth for national pride

Justyne Caruana Sunday, 5 September 2021, 08:13 Last update: about 4 months ago

‘Change your opinions, keep to your principles; change your leaves, but keep intact your roots’ – Victor Hugo, French writer

 

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Labour’s performance during the pandemic shows its determination in securing an equilibrium between safeguarding our health and protecting our livelihoods. The hard work and sheer resolution injected into every initiative to beat the odds are there for all to see. They are solid proof that this government is not afraid to leap into the unknown with caution and courage. Where larger countries hesitated, we made solid decisions at the right time. They have pulled us through the worst of the pandemic with commendable results. The challenges we are facing are being tackled successfully thanks to a solid economic legacy built over the last two Labour-led legislatures.

 

Our principles

Social justice and a fair distribution of the country’s wealth are the foundations on which we based our decisions over the last 18 months. It is ironic that Labour celebrated its first centenary amid the harshest and most unexpected health threat in recent history. It has proven yet again that in times of strife; it is the only Party that uplifts and supports the country with success. This is because Labour fights all obstacles with its most fundamental political principle – that of social and distributive justice based on equality and equity.

No Maltese government has ever had to face and adapt to the complex and uncertain challenges brought about by Covid-19. However, we have pulled through because as a Party it vaccinated us against elitism and our love and commitment to the people’s wellbeing is the driving force behind every decision we take. Moreover, our cherished belief in Malta first and foremost is the yardstick with which we face all challenges. Whether it's a pandemic or the chaotic reactions of a clueless and divided Opposition, this belief is what sets us apart and proves time and again that in the hour of need, Labour is the way forward whatever the circumstances.

Despite the dark and foreboding forecasts of a fragmented and disorientated Opposition, our painstaking efforts are steadily showing results that exceed all expectations. The record-breaking rate of economic growth and the lowest rate of unemployment in history, notwithstanding the pandemic, are proof yet again that the country is blessed with the right leadership at the right time. We are reaping the benefits of a government that is steadfast in its belief in distributing the country’s wealth fairly and inclusively.

 

No pain, no glory

This government’s successes are not coincidental as has been inferred by its critics. They result from the efforts of a brave Cabinet led by a genuine leader, Dr Robert Abela. I can vouch for the sheer hard work and determination shown by all of us in Cabinet to overcome the current setbacks. The smooth running of the country on all fronts is our priority. I note with satisfaction that despite the often puerile and amateurish criticisms and knee-jerking tactics of a few power-hungry groups and factions intent on hindering the advancement and wellbeing of our country; we are making headway and achieving our goals. This is all thanks to the constant and ongoing encouragement and involvement of all stakeholders in the decision-making processes set up as a government.

People from all walks of life and ideologies are joining forces. They know that this government feels the pulse of the people. They know also that the ongoing courageous adaptations and changes being taken are because Labour’s foundations are solid and its intentions are genuine.

Others have played surreal partisan games, sustaining their chronic divisiveness and alarming people when national solidarity is the only way forward. The common good and wellbeing of every citizen is the driving force behind every decision we take as a government. The thousands of like-minded people that are part of an ever-growing team working hand in hand with this government do so because they know they are in safe hands.

 

Health and livelihood

The Maltese and Gozitans are reaping the benefits of courageous economical interventions and the investment of millions of euro built over the last nine years of labour tenure. Diligent planning ensures our continued successes and sustainability. Future generations will one day look back at Labour’s unique ability to face challenges head on while at the same time safeguarding the country’s livelihood and ensuring positive rates of economic growth, solid financial investments and record-low unemployment.

Indeed, we adapt and decide according to our immediate needs, but we never abandon our roots. We are currently working on the final touches of the second budget since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic a time when government income is at its lowest. Conversely, the financial investments of our citizens and the job-creation within the private sector are at their highest. Despite all odds, this Budget ensures yet again that no taxes and financial burdens are added.

 

Our second Covid-19 Budget

We have not and will yet again spare no effort to secure the health, education and social wellbeing of our people. As Minister for Education, together with the cooperation of thousands of dedicated educators in the public and private sector, I am determined to ensure that we give our children the highest standards of education. After all, our most precious objective is our children. They are our future. They deserve and require the highest standards of education available to face an ever unpredictable future. They are the leaders of tomorrow.

The goal of this government is to rise above all challenges, protect the most vulnerable, distribute wealth with equity and build a more accessible and inclusive society. Labour is fully committed to sustain the country’s endemic resilience and continue to encourage the building of a fair and just society where everyone is valid and feels part of the whole.

 

Our commitment, our pride

In our democracy and in an ever-increasing pluralistic society, the opinions of others are important, as long as they are well meaning. If they are not obstructive and divisive, they are the yardstick by which we can measure our continued survival in the future. In good measure, the pandemic is tangible proof that together as one, we can reach great heights.

What an honour it is for us to live in these trying times and brave the waves! How comforting it is to know that everyone feels valid and worthy and is part of a society that has Malta and Gozo at heart as one nation! 

 

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