“Institutions are there to protect everyone” – PM Robert Abela

“Institutions are there to protect everyone living in this country. Irrespective of race, belief or gender.” This was declared by Prime Minister Robert Abela in his first reaction to an incident which happened earlier today where a migrant worker was allegedly left abandoned at the side of a road by his employer after being injured at work.

Prime Minister Abela was addressing Socialist Members of the European Parliament during their meeting in Malta.

“This, if indeed true, is totally unacceptable. This attitude will not be tolerated, under no circumstances. Every resident in our country will receive the protection of our institutions,” added the Prime Minister while confirming that the Police are currently investigating.

Wide ranging reforms

In his message to the MEPs, Prime Minister Abela referred to the wide ranging reforms enacted by the Maltese Parliament in the past months. Among these, the independence of the judiciary and changes to the method of appointment of judges.

“We have significantly increased resources to important institutions, including institutions investigating anti-money laundering and terrorism financing,” said the Prime Minsiter.

This set of reforms, he added, has been made at a time of unprecedented challenges brought about by the COVID pandemic.

Citizens remain our top priority

Prime Minister Abela said that during COVID, his government focused on protecting the health of its citizens. At the same time, it gave as much importance to the economic aspect.

“That is why we supported families, employees and businesses with very generous packages, also with the help of the EU. As a Socialist government, citizens remain our top priority,” Prime Minister Abela said.

He added that Malta looks ahead with the lowest unemployment rate and the highest employment rate in history. Our work on social justice, civil rights, the participation of women in the labour market, he said, remains a priority.

Prime Minister Abela also spoke about Malta’s plans in takling climate change, noting the European Commission President’s declaration that Malta’s RRF plan is one of the greenest the Commission has approved so far.

We must move on with decarbonisation reforms, as well as reforms in waste management, transport and our digitalisation process.

As he referred to the Socialist meeting held weeks ago in Berlin, he congratulated Olaf Scholz on his successful election campaign in Germany. 

“The future of Europe is in our hands. We can build back better by taking a citizens approach. Let’s use this week’s meetings to build a stronger Europe together. This is what we’re committed to and what we will deliver,” Prime Minister Abela ended.

“We came here to support Robert Abela’s government” – Iratxe García Pérez

On her part, the President of the Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament Iratxe García Pérez said that this was the first S&D meeting outside of Brussels since the start of the COVID pandemic. It’s a moment to rebuild contact with citizens, outside of the Brussels bubble.

“We came here to show support to Robert Abela’s government reforms its recovery plan,” she said.

Referring to Malta’s social initiatives during the COVID pandemic, Ms García Pérez said that this was a clear example of how Socialist governments should work. We now need to ensure quality for our employees.

García Pérez also took the time to note the difference between Malta’s strengthening of the Rule of Law and what we’re seeing in other Member States such as Poland and Hungary, saying that Malta’s situation is the complete opposite of such countries.