Dad, political sociologist, local councillor, drummer from Malta

Thursday, March 08, 2012

Councils that truly serve residents

Michael Briguglio

http://www.maltatoday.com.mt/en/blogsdetails/blogs/Councils-that-truly-serve-residents


On the 10th of March, I invite all residents of goodwill to vote for candidates that truly serve and represent them.

I invite residents to vote for councils that are not overridden by lobbies, such as big developers who are destroying our towns and villages.

I invite residents to vote for councils that are not dominated by partisan and personal pique.

I invite residents to vote for forward looking councils that give priority to residents' quality of life.

Alternattiva Demokratika's policies go beyond partisan pique, and AD councillors have always worked for resident's interests first and foremost.

That's what Ralph Cassar did in Attard, where he was the uniting force that moved the council to oppose the disastrous development in Wied Inċita. That's what I did, when, as Sliema local councillor between 2003 and 2009 when we managed to halt disastrous development in Sliema, namely at the Pjazzetta, the Chalet and the Qui-Si-Sana gardens.

While currently the PN and PL in Mosta are silent, we at AD are opposing the scandalous development in Wied il-Għasel. In St. Julian's, we are the only ones defending resident's against Portomaso developers who are proposing further development on the town's coast, contrary to their original permit.

In Gżira, AD is the only party talking about Manoel Island as truly belonging to residents and not to speculators who want to build a casino, five-storey buildings and more apartments.

In Swieqi, we have coaxed the authorities to start work on a community centre, even though the Government, in an electoral panic, has started work without the necessary permits!

In other localities, from Munxar to St. Paul's Bay, and from Balzan to Qormi,
we have talked about matters that affect people's quality of life, from air pollution to accessible street infrastructure.

Alternattiva Demokratika - The Green Party, as opposed to other parties, is free from the shackles of big lobbies like property developers. We can call a spade a spade and can defend residents without anyone pulling our strings.

At the moment, our streets are akin to a moonscape and many pavements are inaccessible. AD councillors will ensure that accessibility for persons such as children the elderly, parents with pushchairs and parents with disability is given the priority it deserves.

AD councillors will ensure that construction follows all rules and regulations, trucks are not over laden and that the authorities really enforce against damage to streets and pavements.

AD councillors will also ensure that councils oppose unsustainable development. We have the necessary experience to defend citizens rights, to work in unison with councillors of goodwill, with NGOs.

AD councillors can serve as a bridge between the two other parties, and thus would really work for the locality. Frequently, it's AD's proposals that do the trick for bettering a locality. We have always talked about a better environment, about defending vulnerable persons, and for accessible infrastructure.

That's why AD is proposing councils that are truly serving residents. We thus appeal to residents to vote for consistency, responsibility and integrity.. For our streets to fixed, for a better public transport and facilities for pedestrians and cyclists, for clean energy in our streets, public gardens and the council's buildings, for councilors that defend open spaces, for better recycling schemes, for a neighborhood policy that ensures security and safety.

My message is thus to to go out and vote. Make your vote matter, by choosing, with a sense of hope and optimism, AD candidates for councils that truly serve residents. I also appeal to continue voting for other candidates, independent, blue or red, who are truly ready to serve their locality.

As AD chairperson, and Sliema candidate, I would like to thank AD's other candidates, who have also chosen to get down to the job: Ralph Cassar (Attard); Yvonne Arqueros Ebejer (St Julians); Simon Galea (St Pauls Bay); Solange Sant Fournier (Swieqi); Leonard Schembri (Gzira); Michael Bajada (Munxar); Henrik Piski (Qormi); Robert Callus (Mosta); André Vella (Balzan).

Michael Briguglio is chairperson of Alternattiva Demokratika and a candidate for the Sliema local council.

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