16 Nov 2015 Famous last words
In the aftermath of last Saturday’s Paceville tragedy where more than seventy youths, not all underage, were injured some critically, the usual declarations were made.
If I tell you that a Maltese politician said that he was furious at what had happened and he would order a review of the legislation, would you be able to tell if it was Lawrence Gonzi or Joseph Muscat who said it? Would you be able to distinguish? This line of reasoning is characteristic of whom, which one of them, or both?
Basically , the whole point is – did anything change after March 2013, when the nation sent a message loud and clear that it wanted change, a change I campaigned and fought for in Parliament too. Things were not good pre-2013 and nothing will undo history and change that. But did they improve? People wanted change and that verdict is immutably cast in stone, but did they get it?
The Paceville incident of last Saturday is yet another episode of political responsibility. At this stage politicians should not be talking about investigations which will take place anyway, without any politicians’ intervention, hopefully, or review of legislation, which is tantamount to an admission of previous inaction, but about their political responsibility if such legislation was not in place and enforcement lacking. This is another issue of political responsibility sic et simpliciter.
People in this country voted for change, for the better, and not for a group of politicians to just step into the shoes of their predecessors without changing anything, if not worse. Some people have been through a lot because they believed change was in the national interest. People did not vote for glamour and arrogance.
What was wrong yesterday is wrong today. The politicians’ responsibility in this case is by far greater than the businessman’s. Businessmen operate within the the legal and administrative framework set up by politicians and take note of sentiments and attitudes fostered by politicians’ declarations, and their blame if any should be apportioned accordingly.
And the politicians’ responsibility is far greater than that of the parents. Not all people were underage, and not only underage people got hurt!
If things are not going to change, soon people will not only completely lose faith in politicians but also start asking what is the scope of having politicians at all?