[WATCH] PN will terminate Gozo hospital privatisation

Bernard Grech says Gozitans must decide on permanent link between Malta and Gozo

Bernard Grech
Bernard Grech

A new PN government pledged that in government, it would immediately reacquire the Gozo general hospital and stop the contract with Steward Healthcare.

In a press conference on Wednesday, Grech announced the party’s proposals for Gozo.

“Immediately, if we are entrusted to govern, we will be ending the privatisation agreement of the only hospital in Gozo,” Grech said.

“We are ready to honour the contract but this is between two parties. If a contract has serious shortcomings and is not been honoured by Steward, it should be addressed. I am determined to stop the contract as I value the healthcare of the Gozitans more.”

Grech said the party was presenting an “ambitious, credible and doable” electoral program.

He said that in government, the PN would be constructing a new 400-bed hospital in Gozo, “offering the best care possible to the Gozitans”.

Grech promised that all employees working at the current hospital would be absorbed by the new one. He added that the government would be financing cancer treatment on the island, and also providing a new MRI service.

Grech said a new PN Government will be building a new MCAST campus in Gozo, and introduce courses related to the 10 new sectors, the party pledged to create.

A Malta Enterprise branch will be set up in Gozo, to continue helping the industry and businesses fot them to have means to increase their operations in Gozo.

Grech reiterated the pledges to increase the size of the Mgarr harbour, and increase the fleet by two new ships. One of the ships will be replacing the leased Greek one and will be dedicated for the transport of goods.

“Gozitans have to deal with double insularity. We will be improving the lives of Gozitans and reach a balance between excellent accessibility and a healthy economy,” he said.

With regards to the permanent link between Malta and Gozo, Grech said the PN believes this would improve the connectivity between the islands, but emphasised a decision would only be taken once all the studies would have been concluded and a referendum voted upon by Gozitans.

“The Gozitan people should decide and they should be as informed as much as possible before taking this decision. We believe Gozitans can make the right choice,” Grech said.

The PN also promised an efficient aerial link service between Malta and Gozo.

PN MP Claudio Grech, who on Monday announced he would not be contesting the general election of next March, said the Nationalist Party unanimously approved the electoral program on Tuesday evening.

“This is a program built on a clear vision, of where the party wants to take the country and how it wants to improve the lives of Maltese and Gozitans,” Grech said.

He said the electoral program consists of 15 themes, with Gozo being one of them.

Grech said the proposals were aimed at preserving Gozo’s identity whilst improving its socio-economic reality. He spoke of the importance of Gozo’s economy but stressed its environment should be safeguarded.