PN pledges to increase pensions to minimum wage 'no matter the cost'

A National government would increase national minimum pension no matter the cost on the public purse, Paula Mifsud Bonnici pledges

From left: Robert Cutajar, Paula Mifsud Bonnici and Stephen Spiteri
From left: Robert Cutajar, Paula Mifsud Bonnici and Stephen Spiteri

A future Nationalist government would raise the national minimum pension to the equivalent of the minimum wage, no matter how much it will cost the public purse, shadow social policy Paula Mifsud Bonnici said. 

The PN estimates that this proposal will cost some €8.5 million, but the Labour Party has warned that it will cost closer to €20.5 million.

Addressing a press conference, Mifsud Bonnici stood by the PN's costings but bullishly said that a PN government will introduce this measure even if Labour had got the sum right.

"Even if, for argument's sake, this scheme will cost €20.5 million, we will still introduce it because it will mean €20.5 million more filtering into pensioners pockets to improve their quality of life. We are committed to implementing this proposal, no matter how it costs."

"It is surreal and ironic that the Labour Party, which is supposed to be the party for workers and pensioners alike, has come out against this proposal and this proves that the PN is the people's party."

She said that Labour's resistance proves that Joseph Muscat is "against the people, against our families, and in favour of stagnant pensions."

When asked by MaltaToday how it can ensure the raise can be sustainable, Mifsud Bonnici responded that the PN had got its costings spot on and that a PN government won't waste millions of euro of public funds as Labour has.

"We won't pay €4.2 million to buy back Café Premier or €3.5 million to Gaffarena for half a house, Simon Busuttil won't rent his private car to the state for €70,000, and a PN Cabinet won't cost an extra €100 million [over five years] as the Labour government's has."