Cracking Under Pressure

Despite Prime Minister Joseph Muscat’s claim that the PA has fought off planning applications in Wied Ghomor (link video), the PA has in fact given permission for the construction of a hotel. The guesthouse comprises 5 stories which the Planning Authority claims will not disturb virgin land.

It is the second time in a week that the Hon. Dr Joseph Muscat has been contradicted by the authorities beneath him.  The second instance is the source of funds of the substantial €5m donation given by the Government to Puttinu Cares last week. While Muscat claimed it came from the IIP (Citizenship Scheme), Finance Minister Edward Scicluna denied this was the case (he later deleted his post).

In the midst of the controversy that emerged, Finance Minister Edward Scicluna took to social media to say that the donation would be coming from the national budget and not from the IIP proceeds which go to the National Social and Development Fund.

More often than not, Joseph Muscat has learned to create a system that conceals “mistakes” as soon as they crop up.

These wrongdoings, however, seem to start showing up one after the other in quick succession, too quick for accountability to be shouldered effectively. In turn, this creates a system in which resignations are non-existent.

Shortly after the PR mess that followed their graciously benevolent donation from the taxpayers’ purse and identity, the Wied Ghomor contradiction ensued.  In election mode, the Muscat campaign eagerly supported environmental protection. To environmentalists, he was the promised great and glorious leader who would defend any patch of ODZ turf from any whiff of development.

Needless to say, Joseph Muscat has let down virtually every environmentalist after his promises were revealed to have been nothing but a ploy. The Wied Ghomor decision today is contrary even to what has been decided in the past weeks, with the PA previously succumbing to civil society’s pressure to avert further construction.

With so many conflicts of statements being issued by a variety of authorities, is it safe to assume these are mistakes, or is a more serious question raised? Has Joseph Muscat lost his authoritarian control he had once commanded with an iron fist? Are the cracks showing within the indestructible image that has been built around him and the Labour Party in government?

Joseph Muscat
Tuesday 3rd April https://www.facebook.com/josephmuscatdotcom/videos/10157399758234741/

Find the video here, probably to be removed soon. It is unlikely that this is a late (and tasteless) April Fool’s joke. The articles breaking that Wied Ghomor is going to be built anyway are attached to this piece.

The Planning Authority are part of Joseph Muscat’s government. If they are not doing their job, it is the Labour Party’s role in Parliament to make sure that the regulations are fixed so that they do their job as they should.

Claiming that the incumbent Labour Party is a supporter of the environment does not hold water if this is unsupported by fact.

Even if, by some miracle, the Party begins to protect the environment, it will be a long time before its credibility will be restored to remedy the damage caused around Malta thus far. The extent of the environmental damage caused is on Joseph Muscat’s deceitful hands.

mt
https://www.maltatoday.com.mt/environment/townscapes/85824/23room_hotel_approved_in_wied_gomor#.WsT6wYhuZPa
Wied Ghomor 2
https://www.timesofmalta.com/articles/view/20180404/local/controversial-wied-ghomor-guesthouse-gets-go-ahead-after-all.675368?utm_source=tom&utm_campaign=top5&utm_medium=widget Times of Malta
Indi
http://www.independent.com.mt/articles/2018-04-04/local-news/PA-defends-decision-to-approve-guesthouse-development-in-Wied-Ghomor-6736187464 Independent
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