[WATCH] Adrian Delia insists government has betrayed country’s workers

The Nationalist Party leader said the number of people struggling to make ends meets was constantly increasing and had now reached levels ‘similar those in Spain and Portugal during the worst of their financial depression’

Nationalist Party leader Adrian Delia
Nationalist Party leader Adrian Delia

Nationalist Party leader Adrian Delia has accused the government of betraying the country’s workers, as well as the most vulnerable in society. According to the PN leader one in ten people were currently struggling to pay rent or their loan repayments.

“This number is the same as there was in Spain and Portugal during the worst of their financial depression some eight or nine years ago. This is the state Maltese and Gozitans are now at,” he said.

Delia was addressing a political activity in Zabbar, where he said that the country now had some 70,000 citizens who were living in a state of financial poverty.

“This means that while they have a job, the amount they are earning is not enough for them to make it to the end of the month, and to buy the medicines they need.”

Over the last week, Delia said he had continued to meet with people in order to understand the reality they were living, repeating his mantra that it was meeting people, and not statistics, that could give an accurate picture.

Turning to electricity prices and the controversy surrounding the way citizens are being billed for their water and electricity consumption, Delia stressed that 80% of consumers were being robbed by the government.

Delia said that recently published Eurostat figures had showed that Malta had the 7th highest electricity tariffs.

“When I say seventh highest it also means that countries that are higher than us have a standard of living that is higher than ours,” he said. 

He said that in the last half of 2017, all countries saw a reduction in price of electricity whereas in Malta it had increased by 7.1%.

“Joseph Muscat continues to say that electricity prices have gone down. It is not true. They have increased, you are taking people for a rid,” Delia said.

“Why is this happening in what should be the best of times? Where is the surplus?” Delia asked.

He said that while on paper it appeared as though the country was making millions, those millions were going “elsewhere”.

Delia said the country had been robbed of €40 million in energy countries signed with SOCAR, and had similarly wasted millions on the concession granted to Vitals Global Healthcare for the running of three of Malta’s public hospitals.

The PN is currently demanding that the courts declare the concession agreement signed between the government and the private operators null and void, and said that efforts were being made to have the case heard behind closed doors.

Delia pledged that the PN would not let this happen and would expose government’s attempts to rob the people of what was rightfully theirs.

On last week’s debate on a report on the rule of law in Malta drawn up by MEPs who came to Malta on a fact-finding mission last late last year, Delia said that the government had destroyed Malta’s reputation and credibility.

“Before we used to discuss our abilities in the financial services sector, but today Europe speaks about Malta as a money laundering centre,” he said. “You have destroyed our reputation and everything we had built.”

The PN leader warned that while the country would continue to get investment, it will come from those who were looking for lax standards and lack of enforcement and due diligence, something he said was true of the way the government dealt with investors but not how it dealt with ordinary citizens.

“If you are talking on your phone while driving you get your license taken away, but if you set up a bank with dirty money then you can keep it,” he said.

He said that people were slowly realizing what was happening around then, and were seeing that the government had no plan for the country.

In a statement, the Labour Party said that a year after the nation had clearly shown its desire to do away with negativity and those working against the country, Delia was insisting on being against investment in the energy sector while continuing to insist electricity prices had not gone down.

"He is also against investment in the healthcare and continues to use tactics that harm Malta," it said.