Labour accuses government of 'political opportunism' over Budget 2012 shortfall

Labour accuses government of ‘political opportunism’ over Budget 2012, claiming it knew that announced measures were to be faced by serious shortfalls.

PL spokesperson for public service and equality Helena Dalli hit out at government for presenting a financial budget a few weeks ago, and now be faced by orders from Brussels to slash a further €40 million in expenditure.

"It is blatant political opportunism to promise measures and later withdraw them," Dalli said in a statement.

Labour - Dalli said - perfectly agrees on the need to reduce expenditure in certain sectors of public administration, but deplores the way in which government presented a budget, knowing well that it could not match its fiscal ambitions.

Helena Dalli accused Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi of being "politically dishonest" when announcing his decision to freeze his ministers parliamentary honoraria.

"This decision is purely to respond to the current political crisis the Nationalist Party finds itself in, and not because of the economic situation, which has been in trouble now for quite some time," Dalli said.