No intros, so let’s just get to the knuckle of the argument. What happened in Parliament proved beyond doubt that our country has been hijacked by two colluding political parties and their unanimous vote to capitalise on the existing issues faced by us Gozitan residents, proved beyond doubt that the Nationalist Party on its own is not an electable alternative government.

MEP candidates and local council candidates running on the PN ticket are now accomplices to this disgusting situation.

There cannot be any justification what so ever by any party member or political leader to what happened and not one single PN member of the party can claim that his or her interests are national and in the interest of the environment and the future of our country.

While some may think I am overreacting to the vote in Parliament related to the Gozo tunnel project as proposed, I will delve more into why this vote was a heavy blow to all of those who cherish dearly our patrimony and heritage and were hoping that the PN had potentially realised that this country needs a change in the existing social, economic development plan. 

Labour proposed a motion in Parliament which in substance was bait for the PN, just weeks before the upcoming elections.

PN just like a goby fish (mazzun) took the bait claiming that it was satisfied that the amendments it proposed were accepted by Labour. Brilliant strategy.

So, what we have is a goby fish sugar-coating its own hook to make it more digestible. 

The reason is simple. Whatever clichés were used in the motion and the proposed amendments, reference is made only to the project as proposed and it only considers the environmental impact the actual tunnel project will have on Gozo and Malta.

No commitment or reference is made to any strategy or development plan which will safeguard Gozo now, even before the tunnel project starts

No commitment or reference is made to any strategy or development plan which will safeguard Gozo now, even before the tunnel project starts. 

It is now the time that developers will use to speculate on land and propose new blocks of flats on plan as the price of land in Gozo is “still” within reach. Those in Parliament, who have unanimously agreed on giving Gozo the last blow on its head, are facilitating developers, who will be having the best time of their life proposing cheap apartments with return on investments of well over six to 10 per cent.

The opportunity “not to be missed” will be the marketing tool to be used as they will be assuring people that once the tunnel is built, Gozo will be the next destination to live, in what will be a very short-lived island of tranquillity, peace and beautiful countryside. 

There is no doubt in my mind that over the next seven to 10 years, Gozo will be raped beyond recognition as the existing development and ODZ policies have been extensively abused and are by far highly inappropriate in today’s context. It is clear why Labour has been procrastinating the revision of both development and ODZ policies. The next target was Gozo.

Developers are no fools. They have realised that they need green pastures to pursue their systematic destruction of our already highly populated islands and fill their greedy pockets even more.

Labour has already claimed that the strategy is to increase the population and maintain economic growth by means of using the construction industry as the main platform.

The MDA has already dealt with Labour and asked it to consider giving more free hand on land in exchange for slowing down its barrage on village cores. It is a no-brainer to realise how intricate, the cobweb of corruption, collusion and deceit is.

Sadly, the PN have either been far too naive to realise this or effectively fully aware of this situation and decided to be part of it. 

Whatever the case, whoever claimed in the past that the PN is Labour’s biggest asset was a prophet.

Steve Pace is a strategic thinker.

This is a Times of Malta print opinion piece

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