Malta’s Opposition Leader took aim at the government’s “slow” COVID-19 vaccine rollout and efforts to ignore expert advice during a public political event in Mosta.
Bernard Grech called out Prime Minister Robert Abela’s emphasis on returning to normality when, Grech said, he was allowing decisions that were actually slowing down Malta’s recovery from the ongoing pandemic, such as the controversial removal of a government health consultant.
Instead of listening to the experts, Abela wanted to forge ahead with his own thoughts, Grech said, slowing the island’s recovery down even further.
“Stop lying to the people, Prime Minister” Grech said strongly. “The vaccine rollout is too slow – and the experts are telling him this. We want the vaccine to be given out quicker. Our nurses can do it, but they need to be organised.”
Grech said that beyond the health fears that thousands of Maltese citizens have as the pandemic continues, many are now afraid they may end up homeless.
“People are worried about being kicked out of their homes. We have a ticking time bomb here – what are you doing about these things? Let us sit down together and show people we can go beyond partisan interests,” he urged.
Aside from COVID-19, Grech called out the controversial gender quotas bill that was recently tabled in Parliament, saying the plan showed a “lack of vision”. Similarly, Grech noted that the fact that Abela had called two cabinet reshuffles in the space of just 10 months was a clear sign of “incompetence”.
“He is only interested in his own personal interests and those of his party, so he is making constant changes to ensure he stays on top,” Grech said. “Abela does not care about families.”
Commenting on the fact that he had now been PN leader for 100 days, Grech said he had been focused on building a strong team and attracting candidates who were capable and had a vision – and not because they didn’t have pretensions, in reference to backlash sparked by the sexist comments of a government consultant.
“We want people to join us not because they are beautiful or because they are good public speakers but because of their capabilities.”
Grech ended his speech by pledging for his style of politics to be one that will bring the island closer to normality, and urged the government to work closer with the Opposition in the best interests of the island.