Tuesday, 28 July 2009

Times: PM lays stress on need of strong families

Tuesday, 28th July 2009

The point of departure of any discussion on divorce should be the consensus that the family was the most important structure in Malta, Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi said yesterday.

Steering away from controversy on the hot issue, Dr Gonzi said that with such principle in mind, the country could discuss how to strengthen the family and how to best address the realities people in the country were facing.

Dr Gonzi was speaking after he was presented with a report entitled For Worse, For Better: Re-marriage After Legal Separation by the members of the Today Public Policy Think Tank.

The report says divorce legislation has become an urgent necessity and laws to regularise cohabiting couples are no substitute.

The Church criticised the report saying the country did not need such legislation because it was detrimental to society.

The think tank's director general, Martin Scicluna, also presented Dr Gonzi with an unpublished report on the affordability of Malta's social security system. The lead author was Joseph F.X. Zahra, former head of the euro changeover committee and former Bank of Valletta chairman. The report is due to be published tomorrow.

Mr Scicluna said he hoped the report would stimulate public debate and nudge the government into action as this was a topic successive governments tended to sweep under the carpet.

Dr Gonzi said the issue of affordability was a challenge that had been long in coming and which the country needed to discuss and tackle away from partisan politics.

[Click on the hyperlink above to view the comments at the Times' website.]

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