The Malta Independent 13 June 2024, Thursday
View E-Paper

Your voice in Europe

Sunday, 12 May 2024, 08:04 Last update: about 2 months ago

Marija Sara Vella Gafa

Any fool can start a war.

A wave of anxiety has gripped European citizens as EU politicians, Roberta Metsola included, insist that Europe must invest further in military equipment. They have ditched dialogue and peace making aside and are now planning for warfare. Manfred Weber, the European People’s party chief in the European parliament, promotes the idea that the EU should take over from NATO in defending Europe. Former PN leader Simon Busuttil, Weber’s secretary general, jumped to his defence. Creating the conditions for peace is never easy. It requires statesmanship rather than the quick fix of military action. But statesmanship is clearly lacking within the EU institutions.

Casa’s jihad

Whilst Metsola and Weber seek the quick fix of military action for Europe and beyond their colleague, MEP David Casa has waged holy war on the Labour government and its supporters. After twenty years at the EU parliament, he promises us more of the same only that this time round he pledges to adopt more of an extremist stance against Labour and Malta.  Casa has gone up a political cul-de-sac by being bogged down in petty politics. Now he cannot get out of it. In the meantime, his party’s establishment, of which he's a proud member, will ensure his re-election come June 8. It serves them for him to be there.

The Establishment

The recent political developments leave no doubt that the hidden hand of the Nationalist Party, and its affiliates, the establishment is busy trying to create a political ruckus. They are the same people who ousted Adrian Delia, a democratically elected PN leader, from his seat. For them, anything Labour should be mocked at and demonised. We Labourites are “scum”, they are the “righteous”. Their sense of entitlement has rendered the Nationalist Party flat on its back and clearly unelectable.

Mental health awareness

It is imperative, now more than ever, that a workplace has a dedicated staff member that can deal with mental health issues. I spoke about this need at a meeting I recently had with GWU Secretary General Josef Bugeja at the Union’s headquarters in Valletta. The GWU, a staunch advocate and supporter of workers’ rights since its inception, provides this service to its employees.

Access to banking services

During my house visits many, particularly, the elderly and the infirm, often complain, and rightly so, about the lack of accessibility to banks and financial services within Maltese villages and localities. Along the years, banks have cut down on what they consider to be extra expenses. This has placed unnecessary burdens on the elderly and the infirm.

More about banks

In recent years, financial regulatory bodies have cracked down hard in compliance with anti-money laundering regulations. That is not necessarily a wrong thing to do but this came at the expense of honest, hardworking man and women.  Law-abiding citizens, NGOs and businesses are still facing unnecessary hurdles in accessing financial services. People are fed up with banks treating them as potential criminals.

Affordable housing

This is a priority of the Labour government but not for the EU. Access to affordable property and housing is a right that no one must be deprived of. As an MEP, I would make this one of my top priorities.

One-size-fits-all

European institutions continue to ignore the realities of the diversity amongst European Union Member States, from very large countries to very small states like ours. The case of the European directive on emissions from ships is a case in point where Malta is being adversely affected. One-size-fits-all policies are unacceptable.  They only lead to inflexible and harsh policies that cause hardship to member states and their citizens. If further integration within the European Union means that we shall have more “one-size-fits-all” directives and regulations, than I am not in favour of further integration.

 

Dr Marija Sara Vella Gafà – Gudja Mayor and PL Candidate for the European Parliament Election

  • don't miss