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Maltese expats petition for right to cast vote abroad

Labour's 2013 manifesto had promised that expats will be allowed to cast their vote in their countries of residence 

tim_diacono
Tim Diacono
2 May 2017, 4:29pm
Expats say they should not have to fly down to Malta to cast their vote
Expats say they should not have to fly down to Malta to cast their vote
A group of Maltese expats have written to the Prime Minister, urging him to allow them to vote in an embassy of their choice in the upcoming election.

In an open letter, the expats noted that Labour had pledged in its 2013 manifesto to allow expats to vote in their countries of residence without having to fly down to Malta. The PN and Alternattiva Demokratika had come up with similar promises.

“Four years down the line, there is nothing to show for that rare moment of cross-party unity,” the letter reads. “With a snap general election now barely a month away, we urge you to safeguard our right to vote on 3 June, ensuring the most appropriate use of taxpayer money in the process.”

They noted that the government spent €1.1 million flying 1,346 Maltese people to the island to cast their vote in the 2015 spring hunting referendum, on top of the €70 paid by each voter.

“The misdirected generosity of successive governments on this particular issue has done our entire country a disservice, distracting resources away from what the Maltese community abroad really needs: a cost-effective and convenient way for us to vote abroad.”

AD chairperson Arnold Cassola was quick to back their call, saying in a Facebook post that “what is normal in the rest of the world should become normality in Malta”.

 

More than a thousand people had signed a similar online petition ahead of the 2013 general election.