The way we communicate

The class distinction between those clerical authorities 'up there', and the foot soldiers who have to face the music in our society, has become so evident in the past few years

Archbishop Scicluna and Josef Caruana… angry political reactions
Archbishop Scicluna and Josef Caruana… angry political reactions

In another section of the press, it was reported that the spokesman of the Archbishop’s Curia had jibed that “Archbishops are removed by the Pope not the editor of l-Orizzont”. He was criticizing the harsh words used by the editor of l-Orizzont in an uncontrolled, but understandable, reaction after Nationalist Members of the European Parliament orchestrated the meeting in the European Union to attack our Prime Minister in the European fora.

The Nationalist politicians had indeed attacked anything done by the Labour Party in government since the time of the 2013 election results that brought the Labour Party in government to power after 25, or so, years in opposition. So much does the Nationalist Party believe in alternate governance in democratic politics. All this was done in full consort with the major and powerful local media and, also, in more subtle form, with the Church.

Rather than humbly admitting that the media in general had treated the Labour government unfairly, the Curia spokesman simply remained in denial and anti-Labour Party. There is nothing new in this approach by the conservative Church authorities in Malta. It still believes that its role in local politics is to remain strongly tied to the divisive party politics of the Nationalist Party.

It is strange that the Archbishop’s Curia refuses to acknowledge the strong message delivered by the Maltese electorate. The people of Malta are fed up of media tactics and strategies aimed solely at causing the senseless character assassination of Labour Party individuals in politics. The Labour Party has been attacked in this way since gaining election victory in 2013. It is a simple excuse to say that Labour did the same. When reacting, Labour did so to rebut and attack back. This has been a natural consequence. If you throw a stone at me, I throw it back at you.

When one comes to think of it, any political party in government, be it Labour or Nationalist, had done good for our society. Whatever is good we have to praise it, and whatever is bad we have to condemn it. The Archbishop’s Curia does a disservice to the many humble members of the clergy who face onerous problems among the people they meet in the streets all the time.

The class distinction between those clerical authorities “up there”, and the foot soldiers who have to face the music in our society, has become so evident in the past few years. There are civil ways and means on how to place an argument for attention and sustain it with factual evidence. There is no need to attack and destroy the dignity of the person on the other side. The angry political reactions of both Josef Caruana and Tony Zarb were simply the automatic counter-attack by single individuals who could not swallow what the Nationalist Party had orchestrated against our Prime Minister in Strasbourg.

The Curia amongst others should have commented and treated Caruana’s and Zarb’s comments within the context of the times and circumstances in which they were made. Still, both Caruana and Zarb were wrong in using certain language. The social leaders in this country need to move up to higher levels in the way they communicate. To have the Archbishop’s Curia criticising them when the Curia has such a bad reputation in its relations with the Labour Party is beyond my comprehension.

David Borg, St Paul’s Bay

New MUT leadership will improve communication with members

Newly-elected MUT president Mario Bonnici
Newly-elected MUT president Mario Bonnici

The MUT refers to an article on MaltaToday and expresses its disagreement with all points raised in the article in relation to the union.

The MUT has been representing its members collectively, as groups and individually for 98 years and the many successes throughout the years have proved this over and over again. In the past years alone, many agreements were signed, including ones at MCAST and MEDE Student Services, St. Martin’s, San Anton, St. Michael’s, on tablets, E-Learning Platform, on Bridging between different employers, mobility, recovery of maternity leave in August and many others.

The new MUT leadership has already continued its work through various representations including discussions on two major agreements. Apart from this the union has relentlessly informed, helped, defended and fought for individual members requiring its help.

Regarding the allegation that it is too focused on defending management, the MUT has always sought to have cordial relationships with different management structures but was the first to oppose decisions by the management when these were not in the interest of members.

In conclusion, the MUT affirms that there are many issues to be tackled and the new MUT leadership will be working hard to improve its various structures and communication with members to be equipped to continue with its work.

Antonio Olivari, Malta Union of Teachers