I have never existed in a time where the current Opposition truly had a purpose. Following the succession of Malta into the European Union, the Party lost its momentum and became complacent. Without any real vision or winning noble cause, they spiralled gradually to then lose the General election a mere ten years later. The factors that put them into the Opposition plague the party to this day selfishness, irresponsibility and antiquity.
Saying this is not an attack on the party or its members, the very notion that the aforementioned would perceive it as an attack a key problem. This is a problem of denial, denial that there is anything wrong in the first place. They deny that the in-fighting is only a surface level problem, the cause of the in-fighting being what direly needs to be addressed, Individuals ego overprogress. This battle for personal survival jeopardises the Party, day after day weakening to the benefit of the individuals within.
This individualism of old has left the Opposition incompetent both to fix itself and to oppose the Governments numerous failings. Our capital had never seen such veracious protests withheld for so long, and yet the Opposition failed to be at the forefront of it all, resulting in the utter embarrassment of losing public trust against a Party with blood on its hands. How can it be that the Government’s greatest opposition, was not, in fact, the Opposition?
This failure would not have been prevented with unity alone. It is what you do with said unity that matters, the ability of the leader to be free from this incumbent denial and actively tackle the underlying factors others refuse to admit are even there, let alone contribute to. One must tackle the incompetence of the Opposition, realise that there has not been any vision since 2003 and accept that change comes at a great sacrifice to the ego of the individuals within.
This is reality, a reality accepted and relayed through the words, actions and public reaction to leader hopeful Bernard Grech.
THE EGO IS NOT THE MASTER IN ITS OWN HOUSE– SIGMUND FREUD
Dr. Grech speaks openly about the issues plaguing Opposition, accepting and evaluating the many mistakes of recent years. He speaks of unity universally, not dependant on that unity being a means to acquire loyalty. His actions confirm this, Grech refusing the plea for him to step up for the role of Leader for several years now. He could have progressed without friction, instead, he answered the call for him to step up. Grech answered a call to duty rather than a superficial need to enlarge his ego. This is because Grech is an accomplished man, respected by many, he has no need for his ego to be stroked by bootlickers.
Grech’s biggest challenge is attempting to forge a natural unity. This is only accomplished by addressing all of the conflicting issues within the party, not by force but rather through strenuous discussion and cooperation. This will not only affect those who would choose to oppose him, but his own camp as well, thus fundamentally challenging the entire party to accept the responsibility which their roles entail.
Through this, there is hope. While it may be a superficial thing, it is the driving force which will propel the Opposition to become a true government in waiting. Following this change, the Opposition will once again deserve government seats.
Grech is this Hope, while not perfect, he has much to offer. He offers hope that all members will be respected regardless of their beliefs. He offers hope that change can be more than just superficial. He offers hope that the age of denial is coming to an end. He offers hope that the party can modernise. He offers hope that youths will be respected by the Party and encouraged to work with the party stalwarts.
The age of a complacent Opposition is coming to a close. Hope is very much alive, evident in survey after survey as well as the recent turnout for nomination signatures, Grech receiving roughly twenty-two times more than the required amount. Youths are now actively helping his campaign instead of being begged to do so, a breath of fresh air following years of incompetence.
This is the winning strategy, where youths are being attracted for a cause rather than to promote an ideology or even worse, lazy concessions to feign progressivism. Grech is a conservative, who knows that working with conservatives alone will only keep the Government in power. This is not an ideological movement, but rather one that keeps at heart the reality that the Opposition is an umbrella of ideologies, thriving on cooperation and compromise. It is this that will allow us to one day wake up to what we deserve.
Seriousness, honesty and transparency, these are what we deserve to wake up to. We deserve an age of opposition that is not about destroying the Government, but rather about saving the country, giving us something to wake up to tomorrow.
Written by: Keaton Agius
(This article was originally posted on civilsocietymt.com)