Election round-up - week 3
The week kicked off with Joseph Muscat revealing his proposals for disabled people, which will see more resources allocated to the Supported Living Division. He also announced PL’s proposals regarding the Judiciary, explaining that an individual will be reviewing the legal system and propose changes to Parliament. Open Government became a lively topic over the weekend, where Dr Muscat revealed plans for transparency and citizen interaction with Government Departments.
Lawrence Gonzi expressed that 25,000 new jobs would need to be created this legislature, in order to keep up with the amount of graduates, women entering the workplace and pensioners who choose to keep working. The major Political event this week was the approval of the PN’s Electoral Programme, which details all the PN’s plans should the Party come to office after March 9.
The Alternattiva Demokratika put forward an army of proposals particularly relating to residential developments, where they pleaded with the Government to stop granting residential development permits and focus on filling the empty apartments which already exist.
The female participation rate in society was heavily discussed, with both parties at logger-heads. Dr Muscat argued that Malta has one of the worst female participation rates in Europe whilst Dr Gonzi argued the opposite.
The other primary issue proposed by both parties was the idea of free tablets for school children. It became the source of numerous jokes by TV personalities as the week ran by. The PL made the original proposal which would grant free tablets to all year 4’s, arguing that once all the ‘kinks’ are worked out then the project would be expanded. The PN followed suite, however proposed a tablet for every student in primary and secondary school, with the PL amending the proposal to read 'every student from year 4'.
The Data Protection Commissioner agreed with the AD, that information regarding elderly patients in care homes and hospital patients should not have to be sent on a daily basis to the Electoral Commission, but rather need only be sent from the Monday before March 9. The week also saw the start of the distribution of the voting documents by Police officers.