Source : Mr G M Mangion¸ PKF Malta
As published on Media Today on Wednesday 19th September 2013
Now that the national elections are over one can dispassionately reflect on the heightened drive by the incumbent party in power to remind us about promises for a better environment and the splitting of MEPA into two separate sections- one protecting the environment and another doing purely the regulatory work connected with urban and rural planning. Equally important is the emphasis made to carry out a root and branch reform of the bureaucracy within Mepa (saddled with its €21 million accumulated losses) which has like old ivy has overgrown on our facade and is starting to pull down the entire edifice. But the truth is red tape is endemic and after years of neglect¸ expects to take months to prune the tree and a longer time for the new growth to appear in the way of healthy new branches. In the meantime¸ the expected political bickering continues unabated and the PN (now in opposition) wastes no time to remind voters of the sterling work done in the past years to improve the quality of the environment in each respective locality.
All this is déjà Vu and rekindles the feeling of smoke¸ spin and mirrors so prevalent in the arsenal of political parties which they use with impunity to deliver their message in the never ending story of vote catching. Starting with the locality of Mosta with a PN majority (previously a labour majority) one meets with extreme disgruntlement from residents who for years suffered from neglected roads¸ broken pavements and lack of recreational facilities among other un-kept promises. It is an open secret that the council did not function properly in the past and that due to internal squabbles among the labour councillors precious time was wasted .This was particularly evident due to disagreements between the Labour leaning mayor and his deputy which over the years has resulted in a dearth of projects and a total neglect for roads and their maintenance. As each winter takes a heavy toll of Mosta’s roads¸ it is not an exaggeration to see minor cracks widening to create multiple potholes. Regrettably¸ scant attention was given to repairing them (let alone entirely rebuilding them) and the outvoted Mosta council appeared to be in no hurry to resolve the problem. A look at the pitiful state of residential roads in many areas of Mosta would immediately reflect the apathy and lack of initiative of the exiting council led by a mayor with a siege mentality those verges on the tragic-comic.
Surely¸ both parties have rallied their supporters to offer an alternative solution and this resulted in Mosta becoming a swing locality. What is so ironic is that the orphan is now being fathered by many parents all clamouring for its welfare and each offer its best care and an improved standard of living. Mosta with the iconic Church dome is the third largest community and yet under the outgoing Labour council it was discovered that in excess of one million euro in allocated funds were left unused (much like the biblical story of wasted talents).The back streets cry out loud for maintenance and it is common to hear lamentations from car owners faced with stiff bills to replace broken tires and repair broken car suspensions. Yes¸ one does not have to be a