Saturday, 16 February 2008

In the interest of the nation

The MEPA Auditor's report has been finally published by AD candidate Carmel Cacopardo in the interest of the whole Maltese citizens.

The report may be read by clicking here.

Friday, 15 February 2008

Please check if your Vote belongs to you. (1)

They say that a vote for AD is a vote for the MLP. Is this true?

Incorrect. This statement is based on the assumption that all the people who vote for AD have previously voted for PN. This is very far from the truth. AD’s potential voting pool comes from a wide variety of sources. There is a core Green vote consisting of people who have always voted for the Greens, new voters (over 17,000), people who have voted for the MLP and people who would not cast their vote if the Green Party was not contesting. By no stretch of the imagination can it be stated that every person who votes for AD intended to vote for the Nationalist party. In any case votes do not “belong” to any political party but to the voter who may use it as s/he pleases at different times.

Don't allow yourself to be a puppet on a string:

Thursday, 14 February 2008

Early intervention services in Gozo - inexistent

As an educator myself, I would like to comment on the inequality in educational resources and opportunities in Gozo vis a vis those in Malta.

I believe that educational policies in Gozo should not be inferior to those in Malta. Like many of you, I am aware of the relationship between low rates of education achievement and unemployment. The education administration in Gozo often has to struggle between two different ministries who often have two different agendas.

I would like to ask:

'Why is it that in certain areas, decisions of deployment of educators in Gozo are taken by the Ministry for Gozo without consultation with the Ministry of Education?'

Furthermore, 'Why does a family who needs to assess their child for an early intervention has to suffer the inconvenience of having to travel to the Child Development Assessment Unit (CDAU) waking up and leaving home from as early as half past five in the morning for an appointment at half nine? How client centred and child centred is this kind of service? And how is this inefficiency of this service going to affect the child's education success and future job opportunities?

Will this contribute to the possibility that s/he will end up on the unemployment list?

By offering such early intervention services in the Region Island of Gozo, it will help towards increasing equality of educational opportunity between Malta and Gozo. Investment in education does not merely entails investment in the provision of educational services; but investment in the research, evaluation and monitoring of quality provision and prevention programmes.

For these (and other) ideas to come to fruition you need to use your vote wisely. Vote for REAL change.

Who are the jobless in Gozo?

There are other jobs related to service activities which need further investment in Gozo. I am not just referring to the jobs in the infrastructure industry but at the upgrading of jobs related to energy, transport and communications in Gozo that are in desperate need to be seriously addressed. What if you land on Mgarr Gozo and would like to travel to the Inland sea in Dwejra and visit the Citadel and Ramla Bay? Every Gozitan knows that this is impossible to do by means of public transport! Furthermore, one needs to start looking at employability from a broader perspective: jobs related to banking, wholesale and retail trades, and personal activities such as plumbing, plastering, painting and maintenance work are services which are mainly in demand by the Gozitans themselves, but such services are also utilised by the tourism industry.

I believes that it is possible to increase job opportunities for Gozitans and decrease the number of people registering for employment by monitoring the whole of the welfare system in Gozo and addressing some of these questions and issues:

Why is the number of people registering for employment increasing during any administration and decreasing just few weeks towards a general election period?

Who are the people registering for work? If they were employed before, why are they registering for work now and on which scheme?

Are all of these really unemployed and/or want to seek work?

If not, what measures are taken?

How many Gozitans are boarded-out after the recent close-down of factories in the Xewkija ex- industrial zone? Why?

If these are unemployed and want to work then a plan should include at least some of the project/initiatives mentioned above. After experiencing over 40 years of bi-party political system that put at a disadvantage any attempt for a third party to be democratically represented in parliament; we Gozitans know for sure why such questions are rarely addressed in the parliament of Malta. We also know what needs to happen for a better quality of life in Gozo - at least we Greens know!

Changing Gozo for the better

It is my pleasure to note that now the Prim Minister of Malta and leader of the PN acknowledgesfurther AD's coaltion proposals for sustainable jobs in Gozo and he retaliated AD's proposal to turn Gozo into an eco-island.

If Alternattiva Demokratika were to form part of a coalition government, it would strive to turn Gozo into an ecological island and support this "through new and bright types of professions".

This is just one of over 100 proposals for Gozo listed in a 29-page document, entitled Changing Gozo For the Better, presented by the Green Party in Gozo yesterday.

The document includes proposals for creating new, modern and sustainable jobs in Gozo by ensuring its participation in international fairs, subsidising travel costs for Maltese residents during shoulder months so as to increase inland tourism, promoting Gozo as a holiday base through low-cost travel, offering tax incentives for job creation and offering financial assistance to the private sector to develop niche tourism projects, among other initiatives.

Another set of proposals aims at bringing about reform in the Gozo Ministry and in public administration for a fully democratic. These include the setting up of an inclusive Parliamentary Committee for Gozo Affairs, made up of all Gozo's MPs, and eliminating all the "prevalent stagnant clientelist nepotism".

The document includes proposals for a better quality education for all Gozitans to succeed and another set of proposals targeted at the radical reform in public transport in Gozo which, AD believed, had been neglected for many years.

Most of the proposals were aimed at the creation of new, modern and sustainable jobs in Gozo. The proposals also included measures to transform the controversies over Ta' Ċenċ, Ramla l-Ħamra and Ħondoq ir-Rummien into job opportunities without damaging the natural environment, patrimony and unique ecology.

It is being proposed that Ħondoq ir-Rummien be transformed into a geological and industrial park complemented with an afforestation project and guaranteeing free public access to the bay, Ta' Ċenċ would be expropriated and "given to the nation" and, in the case of Ramla l-Ħamra, the state should claim back the land from the Ulysses Lodge proprietors, remove the abandoned building, restore the partially concreted-over Roman pathway to its former self and holistically restore the whole area.

All these proposals are a guarantee that, through the election of the AD candidate, Gozo will be on the country's political agenda permanently. Gozo is ripe for a reform, which will propel it from an abandoned periphery of Malta to its most successful region. This will happen through the election of an MP for AD, a party characterised by long-term, consistent commitment to the benefit of Gozo and to the welfare of Gozitans.

Tuesday, 12 February 2008

Monday, 11 February 2008

L-AD hi l-aqwa ghodda ghal Ghawdex, huma hafna li ser juzawha fl-interess t’Ghawdex.

Waqt konferenza stampa minn Ghawdex, Dr. Harry Vassallo ipprezenta l-kandidatura ta’ Victor Galea bhala l-kandidat tad-distrett t’Ghawdex ghall-elezzjoni li gejja..

Dr. Vassallo qal li l-kandidatura ta’ Victor Galea f’Ghawdex ser taghti l-opportunita lil dawk li ghandhom il-vot f’Ghawdex sabiex ibiddlu s-sistema ta’ klijentelizmu li sammet lura l-ekonomija Ghawdxija. “Victor Galea gie maghzul mill-kumitat regjonali ta’ l-AD f’Ghawdex minhabba l-entuzjazmu li wera matul dawn l-ahhar snin sabiex gab successi f’Ghawdex f’diversi oqsma”

Dr. Vassallo semma’ d-diversi successi li gab Victor Galea f’isem Alternattiva Demokratika – The Green Party f’Ghawdex tul dawn l-ahhar snin, fosthom l-impenn sabiex jigu salvati Ta’ Cenc, Hondoq ir-Rummien u r-Ramla l-Hamra. Semma l-pressjoni li saret mill-Alternattiva sabiex jigi salvat il-patrimonju u l-htiega li l-partiti jibdew jahsbu f’impjiegi godda u moderni ghall-Ghawdxin f’Ghawdex. “Alternattiva Demokratika fil-parlament biss tista’ tiggarantixxi l-harsien ta’ dawn l-isbah postijiet ta’ pajjizna. Certi li kieku jerga jkollna Gvern immexxi minn partit wiehed dawn il-battalji jkollhom jergghu jibdew mill-gdid minkejja li l-partiti l-ohra qed jaghmlu minn kollox biex ipingu lilhom infushom bhala t-tarka ta’ l-ambjent.” qal Dr. Vassallo.

Dr. Vassallo sostna “Huwa ta’ sodisfazzjoni kbir ghal partit taghna li gibna lil haddiehor jitkellem fuq il-htiega li f’Ghawdex jinholqu mpjiegi godda jekk isir investiment f’energiji mix-xemx, bahar u ir-rih kif ukoll investiment fit-teknologija ta’ l-informatika u aktar xoghol ta’ back-office. Ix-xoghol ghall-Ghawdxin huwa dritt u mhux pjacir u Alternattiva fi gvern ta’ koalizzjoni taghmel minn kollox sabiex id-drittijiet tac-cittadini ma jigux mibdula fi pjaciri u favuri”.

“Huma hafna Ghawdxin li fis-skiet taghhom gharfu li l-piki tal-partiti politici wasslu biex iharsu biss lejn Ghawdex fil-jiem ta’ qabel l-elezzjoni. Sabiex tigi ndirizzata l-karba ta’ hafna Ghawdxin ghal xoghhol ta’ kwalita’ jehtieg li l-min ser jivvota f’Ghawdex jahseb fil-perikli li tista’ tghaddi minnu din il-gzira sabiha jekk jibqghu jigu eletti zewgt partiti biss li l-interess taghhom hu kemm ser jakkwistaw voti aktar milli l-interess u l-gid ta’ Ghawdex. Wara l-hidma ta’ l-Alternattiva f’Ghawdex, l-Ghawdxin gharfu li l-aqwa ghodda ta’ l-Ghawdxin sabiex l-agenda ta’ Ghawdex tkun verament fuq quddiem nett fl-agenda tal-gvern li jmiss huwa vot ghal kandidat ta’ l-AD f’Ghawdex li kulhadd jaf li jahdem bla heda fl-interess t’Ghawdex u xejn izjed”

“Il-partit ipprezenta ‘l fuq minn 100 proposta sabiex jinholoq xoghol keattiv, modern u sostenibbli f’Ghawdex. Fil-manifest ghall-Ghawdex hemm ukoll proposti sabiex issir riforma fil-Ministeru ghal Ghawdex sabiex ikun Ministeru tassew demokratiku, trasparenti u bi tmexxija responsabbli; fejn kulhadd ikollu sehem fid-decizjonijiet li jolqtu fil-laham il-haj lil Ghawdxin u tinqata’ darba ghal dejjem l-ideja li jkun kollox possibli ghan-nies tal-qalba biss. Fost il-proposti ghal Ghawdex Alternattiva tipproponi wkoll riforma fit-trasport pubbliku f’Ghawdex li l-inezistenza tieghu wasslet li kull persuna f’Ghawdex ikollha bilfors tixtri mezz ta’ tasport inkella ma tinqediex. Proposti ohra jinkludu l-qasam edukattiv, sport, kultura u servizzi socjali.” qal Dr. Vassallo.

“Kull Ghawdxi u Ghawdxija illum jafu li Alternattiva Demokratika hija l-unika partit li wera entuzjazmu matul is-sena kollha sabiex issalva l-ambjent u l-karattru t’Ghawdex mill-kilba ta’ ftit spekulaturi li jahsbu li huma ‘l fuq mill-ligi. L-Ghawdxin jafu li d-difiza ta’ l-ambjent tfisser aktar xoghol ta’ kwalita’ f’Ghawdex u niehdu gost li l-Prim Ministru gharaf id-dokument ta’ l-Alternattiva Demokratika dwar l-ambjent ftit jiem qabel l-elezzjoni u qed iwieghed kwazi l-istess proposti ta’ l-AD dwar l-ambjent. Din hi l-kultura ta’ koalizzjoni li Alternattiva Demokratika trid iddahhal fil-pajjiz: dik li nahdmu flimkien ghall-interess ta’ pajjizna u mhux ghall-interessi ta’ min jiffinanzja lil partiti.” temm ighid Dr. Vassallo.

Il-proposti ta' l-Alternattiva Demokratika ghal Ghawdex tista' taqrahom minn fuq

Sunday, 10 February 2008

Kandidat ta' l-Alternattiva fin-Nadur

Dan il-week-end ghalqu in-nominazzjonijiet ghall-kandidati tal-kunsilli lokali. Alternattiva Demokratika Ghawdex ser tikkontesta fin Nadur permezz ta' Martin Camilleri li joqghod fi triq Ghajn Qasab, sewwa sew fit-triq li taghti ghar-Ramla l-Hamra. Martinu huwa wiehed mill-bdiewa li joffri is-servizzi lil Ager Foundation u jghin fil-programmi ta' eko u agro turizmu.

Martin twieled, ghex u jahdem fl-agrikultura. Bhal mijiet ta' Ghawdxin ohra, Martin kien emigra l-Ingilterra ghal 9 snin fejn hadem fil-manifattura. Meta gie lura Ghawdex ghazel is-sengha tal-biedja li kellu missieru u ghadu jahdem fl-agrikultura sal-gurnata tal-lum.

Fl-1990 gie elett president tal-koperattiva tal-bdiewa Ghawdxin - il-Gozitano fis-sezzjoni tal-Frott u hxejjex. Baqa' jigi elett kull sena u ghadu f’din il-kariga s’issa.

Matul dan iz-zmien hadem bla heda sabiex il-prodott Ghawdxi jsib ruhu fis-suq Malti. B’dan il-mod il-bdiewa Ghawdxin gawdew minn aktar profit.

Matul in-negozzjati tad-dhul ta’ Malta fl-Unjoni Ewropeja, irraprezenta lill-koperattiva tal-bdiewa Ghawdxin fi Brussell, u rnexxielu jgib fondi u nxtara makkinarju modern sabiex isir il-grading u l-ippakkjar tal-prodotti ta’ l-ikel, hxejjex u frott. B’hekk ghen sabiex il-kwalita’ tal-prodott Ghawdxi titjieb tant li issa bdejna nesportaw il-prodott taghna barra minn Malta.

Ghaliex ghazel Alternattiva Demokratika?

Inghaqad mal-Kumitat Regjonali ta’ l-Alternattiva Demokratika t’Ghawdex fl-2006. Induna li dan huwa l-uniku partit politiku li ma jibzax mill-verita’.

Ressaq ilmenti ta’ diversi nies minn Nadur lejn dan il-partit. Fosthom l-ingustizzji li jsofru residenti minhabba uhud li jahsbu li huma ‘l fuq mill-ligi.

Ghandu ghal qalbu l-ambjent u l-istorja t’Ghawdex u jaf sewwa li l-qerda ta’ aktar art fil-kampanja ma tergax titregga lura.

Il-Kuragg tieghu wrieh, meta insista li r-residenti ghandhom ikunu nfurmati sew dwar proposta li jsir cimiterju iehor fuq ir-rih tar-Ramla l-Hamra minflok ma sar f’post iehor minghajr ma’ jaghmel ebda hsara lil ambjent naturali u lill-pjan ta’ l-ilma li tant hu mehtieg ghal biedja u kull min igawdi minnha.

Ha sehem f’diversi successi li kellha Alternattiva Demokratika f’Ghawdex fosthom il-kwistjonijiet marbuta ma’ zvilupp xejn sostenibbli proposti ghal Ta’ Cenc, Ir-Ramla l-Hamra u Hondoq ir-Rummien.

Stqasejt lil Martin dwar xi proposti li ghandu meta jkun elett fil-kunsill lokali tan-Nadur u qalli dawn il-punti:

· jassigura harsien ta’ l-ambjent naturali u rurali tar-rahal taghna;

· imexxi ‘l quddiem prodotti agrikoli u organici fil-lokalita’;

· jara li l-aqwa rizorsa naturali li ghandna, l-ilma, jigi protett sabiex ingawduh ahna u generazzjonijiet futuri;

· issir rijabilitazzjoni tal-widien ta’ madwar in-Nadur, ix-xaghri u l-kampanja waqt li jassigura li l-pubbliku jkollu access shih ghal dak li hu tieghu bi dritt;

· min jahdem l-ghelieqi jkollu access tajjeb u bla periklu;

· isir djalogu ferm aktar wiesgha halli r-residenti jkunu jistghu isemmghu lehinhom fi progetti li jolqtu lilhom;

· idahhal aktar serjeta’, demokrazija u responsabbilta’ fil-kunsill;

· l-infieq li jsir minn flus il-poplu isir bl-aktar mod ghaqli u trasparenti;

· ihajjar aktar bdiewa u nies tas-sengha jaghmlu profit minn turizmu alternattiv bhalma hu l-agro u l-eko turizmu fost ohrajn;

· jappoggja xoghol li diga’ sar tajjeb mill-kunsill waqt li jahdem sabiex jitwaqqaf Citizens Advice Bureau li joffri pariri b’xejn lic-cittadini dwar id-dritijiet u l-obbligi taghhom u b’hekk itaffi l-problemi li jiffaccjaw minhabba burokrazija zejda u proceduri kumplikati;

Awguri Martin, f'Ghawdex ghandna bzonn nies kuraggjuzi bhalek.

AD Gozo campaign: A visit to the west

Today 3 of the campaign team members joined me in to start door to door visits and flyer distribution. This is my first time campaigning for myself. I am used to campaign for others. Now I am getting used to campaign for myself.

It is Sunday afternoon and we decided to go to Gharb - my village. The people here do not need much to learn who I am. We know each other. I got very positive comments.

Besides the usual 'awguri', others preferred to discuss with me on different issues.

The Dwejra issue copped up. As I said in my previous blog entry (click here), many people from Gharb got a direct connection with Dwejra. "Why are they giving permissions to build new information centre with a restaurant? Could they not open a tender/offer for people who already owns a property at Dwejra? I can't understand why they are saying they want to protect Dwejra from further development yet they are building this information centre with rooms for NGOs and a restaurant. They could have make use of the present premises. Why more building and yet they are calling it the Dwejra heritage Park?" one of the voters commented quite angrily.

The firework factories was also another topic and many residents feel that the current local council administration did not pressure enough against the authority to stop the permits for further firework factories at San Dimitri. "Of course the council did not make enough. How could a PN mayor object to a PN administered MEPA?" one voter asked me. I told him that the AD Gozo Regional Committee wrote to the Gharb Local council that we would like to meet and discuss this issue, however our offer was refused. To be more precise, our request was never answered.

Then I met two young men. They are hunters. "We would have voted for you but you are against us. I am not going to vote." "Neither am I" said his friend. Indeed the Green Party was always clear. "We never lied to anyone. Unlike Gonzi and Sant, Alternattiva Demokratika was always clear with hunters and bird trappers" I told them.


I also met a Maltese couple who come to Gozo regularly during week-ends. Their response was great and quite insightful. "We invested our money in Gozo. We bought this farmhouse here in Gharb. We like Gozo since this island is different from Malta"
"In what ways?" I asked.
"Well, its more green, more open spaces, no highrise buildings and the countryside is still protected...for this reason enough we are going to vote Green."
"Thank you" I said.
"Give us 30 more of your flyers. We know many other Maltese who are also registered as voters here in Gozo. We want you elected to keep protecting the island from the few greedy people around."