Metsola teases return to domestic politics: ‘I’m here, and I’m staying’

European Parliament President Roberta Metsola says corruption and exploitation must be driven out from Malta’s political arena

European Parliament President Roberta Metsola
European Parliament President Roberta Metsola

European Parliament President Roberta Metsola, who has long been touted to become new Nationalist leader, has suggested she never lost touch with the domestic political scene.

“I'm here, and I'm staying,” Metsola said when asked whether she considered a return to domestic politics.

The EP President was delivering a speech during the Mabel Strickland Memorial Lecture themed 'Malta in a Changing European Landscape,' at the Casino Maltese in Valletta.

She laid out her vision for Maltese politics, emphasising the need to drive out corruption and exploitation.

Metsola uncharacteristically veered away from continental politics, focusing on local issues. She made reference to the Nationalist Party’s demonstration last Thursday, saying people must continue to speak up when faced with wrong-doings.

“The crowds we saw in Valletta this week are proof of that. People want the standards and accountability they were promised Europe would guarantee,” she said.

The EP president mentioned the Qatargate scandal which rocked the European Parliament late last year, which saw vice president Eva Kaili ousted from her position after being linked to the corruption probe.

“We realised we had to act quickly or risk losing people's faith in politics, Europe, and our institutions... We've seen what happens when those in positions of power try to hide the truth,” she said, in a subtle reference to scandals faced by government.

Metsola also slammed the current state of the environment and construction industry. She said she met with Jean Paul Sofia’s mother. Sofia died in a building collapse in Corradino last December.

“She asked me why she is only getting blank answers,” Metsola said. “The same thing happened three years ago for Miriam Pace. Where is the accountability and faith to believe in the institutions? No mother should live with a government that tells her they will not open an inquiry. Why should she? I definitely wouldn’t, and no one deserves that, not in Malta or anywhere else.”