Bernard Grech: Malta must protect its independence, or else it risks losing it

Nationalist Party leader says Malta’s independence cannot be lost to a foreign superpower or empire, but to politicians who fail to step up and do their job

PN leader Bernard Grech
PN leader Bernard Grech

Malta is independent when its people are not oppressed by the reality they live in, Bernard Grech said.

“We must protect our independence, or else we risk losing it,” the Nationalist leader told attendees at the party’s celebrations held in Floriana on Tuesday evening.

Throughout the last week the Nationalist Party held a number of political activities with the theme ‘The quality of life we deserve’, to mark 58 years since Malta’s independence from the United Kingdom.

“It was a Day that opened the doors to other achievements… The republic, the end of the country being a military base and Malta becoming a full member of the European Union,” he said.

He said Malta’s independence cannot be lost to a foreign superpower or empire, but to politicians who fail to step up and do their job.

“The social soul of the Nationalist Party distinguishes it from the rest of the political parties in our country. Against the backdrop of economic recovery, and against the backdrop of global challenges, it needs to be the compass that drives this country to where we want to get to, without leaving anyone behind,” he said.

He said Malta needs to invest in social mobility as part of the solution to combating the cost-of-living crisis hitting the country and the world.

“We can no longer stand in the face of this scourge that is sweeping a growing number of families and pensioners and do nothing,” the PN leader said.

He said people are concerned and are looking towards government for a solution. “All government does is come up with excuses.”

Grech went on to speak about the creation of open spaces, stating they are part of the solution towards increasing people’s quality of life. “The creation and protection of open spaces in our villages and towns, and the conservation of untouched corners in the Maltese countryside should be the top priority for our countryside.”

He stated government policy and work must be in line with European Commission’s 2030 and 2050 environmental targets.

The PN leader said proper investment in education is also part of the important puzzle towards improving people’s quality of life. “Education can no longer be academic but we want to see children and young people grow into active and full citizens with a broader knowledge of the subject in which they train.”

Moving on to health, Grech said proper investment in the country’s healthcare system is also another pillar in ensuring a better quality of life. “We continue to believe that the privatisation agreement with Steward Healthcare should be terminated.”

Concluding, Grech said the Opposition will continue to be an alternative government, that keeps the government in check.

He said government’s attempt to undermine the Opposition will prove futile. “We know what our role is and are determined to accomplish it.”

The son of former Prime Minister George Borg Olivier also addressed the event.