The streets of our capital yearn once more for the marching of those who would choose to stand up to the wicked. Months after the initial protests last December, very little headway has been made in hindsight. The institutions were left to work, and the best they could produce is a nearly unconfirmable testimony, with little to no arrests that stuck. Even the early resignation of former Prime Minister Joseph Muscat, the move that led to the protests dissolution, was nothing more than a PR stunt, still holding significant power within the administration of his successor.
We were told to leave the Institutions to work, but they aren’t. This not only jeopardises justice but also our collective reputation. It is not a critique of the sickness in this country that does this, but the failure to act in a decent manner.
Take the former Minister for Gozo, Justyne Caruana, implicated in the investigation of murdered journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia. Despite having no reason to believe that she had any sort of dealings within the plot, her marriage to Silvio Valletta was enough to force her to hand in her letter of resignation. Not guilty by association but rather a liability.
If we were to take this as precedent on how to deal with liabilities, why has this same concept not been applied to other individuals within the administration?
Moreso now than ever before do we have good reason to demand the resignations of implicated individuals with the recently publicised Montenegro Deal details. We are now aware that 4.6 million euros of taxpayer money were practically handed over to Yorgen Fenech to then be distributed to other guilty parties within the deal. Despite this, a simple response denying the allegations was deemed fit to allow these individuals to remain incumbent within the administration, their collective liability being all but ignored.
They want to make the problem go away, and they will do this by boasting an economy of grandeur, where the powers that be cover your eyes with a slip of paper telling you you’ve been refunded some of the tax that was used to line the pockets of the powers that be. It’s a vicious cycle that without a solid opposition cannot be broken. The opposition should not only serve as the name suggests but also as an alternative. In its failure to do this, how can one blame a Maltese father who can afford to take his family out for dinner with the vouchers? Who can blame a single Maltese mother who relies on free daycare to give her young a better future? There is no shame in supporting an establishment that is not only letting you survive but live.
Corruption of the best things gives rise to the worst.- David Hume
The fact is that under this establishment you may live as long as you remain within your imposed limits. When you’re on the wrong end of the stick the story changes, you have nowhere to turn to as the institutions we failed to uphold to a higher standard cannot protect us from corruption. It is not only those who seek the truth that faces the harsh realities of an unaccountable administration. The business owner loses his livelihood due to an administration that doesn’t care for his woes as it will not gain them political points. The nepotism within government offices where an unqualified cab driver can be given a wage for a job that doesn’t exist, while you are dismissed due to your upholding of unagreeable beliefs. The everyday facebook poster is lambasted on party media without heed. The politician is labelled a traitor after working every day in the name of the country they love.
We are not victims, merely prey of a system that has convinced us that skimming a bit of money off the top is acceptable as our pockets are heavier than they were ten years ago. Our pockets are lined with stones, stones that they will pelt us with as soon as we step out of line.
Corruption is more than just money laundering and shell companies, it’s the wolf in sheep’s clothing that depends on turning hard-working decent individuals, into its next meal.
We can’t wake up as a nation if there’s nothing to wake up to.
Written by: Keaton Agius
(This article was originally posted on civilsocietymt.com)