21 Aug The Party of Stupid (by Raphael Vassallo)
Unfortunately, as someone has told me these days : If Mintoff could in some ways be associated with physical violence, Lawrence ‘DCG’ Gonzi’s name could go down in history tainted with the systematic moral violence which was used to quash dissent against him
Raphael Vassallo is one of the first to write in the independent media about the horrendous democratic implications of the PN Executive procedures and condemnations, in a balanced analysis of the current political situation. But then Raphael Vassallo is not Andrew ‘jack-af -all-trades’ Azzopardi, PBS raido presenter and L-Orizzont columnist, appointed by government on Family Board without call for applications (as was promised in PN electoral manifesto).
I would add that Lawrence ‘DCG’ Gonzi should take stock of the situation in his parliamentary group NOW and not drag his feet any longer dragging this country into more uncertainty. He should not realise he has problems on Christmas eve. If decisions have to be taken, they should be taken NOW, and not in October, risking to spoil the festive season for the whole nation.
When you build a wall and drive straight into it, you might think you are smart and have sufficient control over all the media to plead that it was the wall’s fault, but no one will believe you. If you dig potholes and you drive straight into them, you cant blame the puncture! You can, and having control over almost all media helps, but you won’t manage.
See also :
The fact that political parties in Malta are the most unregulated bodies at Maltese Law puts them almost above the law. This situation is not only greatly detrimental to democracy but is in stark contrast to the situation in all other European countries.
In Germany the Political Parties Act lays down the minimum requirements a political party must observe. No such law exists in Malta. In terms of the German Political Parties Act the disciplinary processes are exercised by the party arbitration tribunals. Under this law all the members of the PN Executive Committee who were the ones acting as prosecutors and judges at the same time, would be disqualified. All of them, just to give an idea of the democratic situation within the party.
In terms of this law, which reflects the state of most other European jurisdictions and legal systems, all disciplinary proceedings against Hon Jeffrey Pullicino orlando, Jesmond Mugliette and myself as well as those in regards to Richard Cachia Caruana are all null, void, without effect and illegal.
If the PN Executive decisions and proceedings are tested in a Court of Law by means of a lawsuit, they would also be declared null,void and illegal due to groos and blatant breach of the Rules of Natural Justice (see Alex Mangion vs Anthony Cilia 20/5/2004 First Hall of the Civil Court per Judge Tonio Mallia)
The Rules of Natural Justice mean that one cannot be a judge in his own cause, and one has a right to a defence.
Wouldn’t it be interesting if you read about this in the ‘independent’ media, if it exists in Malta!
Section 14 of the Law on Political parties (Germany) :
Party arbitration tribunals
(1)Arbitration tribunals shall be set up at least at the level of the party itself and of the top-level regional branches to settle, and decide on, disputes between the party or a regional/local branch, on the one hand, and individual members, on the other, as well as disputes over the interpretation and implementation of the statutes.
(2)The members of the arbitration tribunals shall be elected for a maximum of four years. They must not be members of the Executive Committee of either the party or any of its regional/local branches; nor be employed by the party or any of its branches; nor receive regular income from them. They shall be independent and not be bound by instructions.
(3) The statutes may allow the parties to the dispute, either in general or on a case-by-case basis, to nominate equal numbers of assessors to the arbitration tribunals.
(4) The functions of such arbitration tribunals shall be governed by rules on arbitration procedures designed to guarantee litigants a legal hearing, fair proceedings and the possibility to reject any member of the arbitration tribunal for partiality.
* * * * * * * * * *
When I was unjustly and unlawfuly condemned by the PN Executive, the matter was not on the agenda of the meeting , I was not informed of the matter, and hence I could not have presented my defence. The Executive Committee acted as prosecutor and judge behind my back.
To add insult to injury, it was impossible for me to attend since at the same time I was in parliament finishing off a three and a half hour speech about justice and home affairs reforms, some of which have already been taken ob board by the government. They formed part of my 24 point private motion on extensive reforms in justice and home affairs.
At the same time the PN executive comiitee was condemning me behind my back for disobeying the whip, in the Carm Mifsud Bonnici vote for gross mismanagement in the justice sectro and blocking essential reforms which I had proposed and which after his resignation have beent aken on board by the government.
That is why I contested the condemnation on procedural grounds and also on the merits. I will also be raising the issue of discrimination, vis-a-vis other candidates who have quite some baggage including criminal convictions, and yet have been approved by the same executive committee.