Sociologist, local councillor, activist, drummer from Malta

Sunday, April 22, 2012

“AD is the Progressive Party”

AD Holds AGM

AD Holds AGM

Michael Briguglio, AD Chairperson, said: "The past year was positive for Alternattiva Demokratika - The Green Party, most notably because of the election of two councillors in the local elections, representing an increase in elected representatives. AD also set the ball rolling for the introduction of divorce in Malta, when it took the initiative to write to members of parliament and present divorce legislation. This eventually led to the formation of the historic 'Yes' movement, in which AD played a leading role".

"AD is currently working on its electoral manifesto, which will be subject to approval by its members. In the coming year AD will keep up its role as the progressive party in Malta and as the voice of social justice, protection of the environment, and sustainability".

"Alternattiva Demokratika - The Green Party will keep proving that it is distinct from the PN and PL. Despite their differences, both parties are financed by big business and are hell-bent on maintaining a political system with an electoral system tailor-made for their needs. Yet our vote can determine the result of the next general elections. The green vote cannot be taken for granted".

The AGM approved the following motions:

A motion on Manoel island, resolving that government should make amends for the damage which it has caused with the consent of the Opposition Labour Party as a result of their misconceived politics of encouraging development at all costs, and consequently resolves that government should reclaim Manoel Island back from MIDI and convert it to a recreational park accessible to the public, containing community facilities freeing the space from speculative development and that this should be done without the payment of any form of compensation to MIDI.

A motion about poverty, resolving that concrete and realistic measures should be introduced in order to compensate for the extra burden which is being put on people due to the high cost of living. There should be a realistic evaluation of the cost of living adjustment mechanism (COLA), so that the compensation given annually would really reflect the increase in inflation. To this effect, the method used at present, on which COLA is based, should be revised. The minimum wage should be increased including for part-time and contractual work. There should be a just and sustainable pension reform in Malta. Government expenditure should give priority to alternative energy that ultimately, is the best guarantee against an increase in the expenses involved in polluting energy. It is wastage which should be penalized and not the basic use of water and electricity. This annual general meeting resolves that AD should not use populist discourse with the aim of creating false expectations.

A motion on energy, believing that the state should have a primary role in the provision of energy. It should be made sure that the use of energy is sustainable, and avoid energy poverty, and that work in this field is not precarious. This applies also to energy provided by the private sector. If the private sector doesn’t reach these goals, the state should intervene and regulate in the most effective way possible. The state should subsidise the basic consumption of energy, and penalise waste. The state can make good for the social expenditure in this field by way of progressive fiscal measures, as are the windfall taxes, taxes on environmental damage, and on financial speculation. The continuous emphasis on the use of public transport is another way in which the dependence on oil can be overcome, and fuel will be used in a more efficient and sustainable manner.

AD's executive approved by the AGM for the year comprises of the following officials:

Michael Briguglio, Chairperson;
Ralph Cassar, Secretary General;
Carmel Cacopardo, Deputy Chairperson;
Henrik Piski, Deputy Secretary General;
Simon Galea, Treasurer;
Arnold Cassola, International Secretary,
Andre' Vella, Public Relations Officer,
Other members of the Executive are: Angele Deguara, Mark Scerri, Richard Schranz and Nighat Urpani.

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