Friday, 25 November 2011

Malta Today: Updated | PN to dump anti-divorce stance

National Friday 18 November 2011 - 18:12

Updated basic principles accepts 'different bonds of families'

Paul Borg Olivier will present councillors with the new principles at the General Council tonight.
Karl Stagno-Navarra

The Nationalist Party's official stance against divorce is to be jettisoned and treated as obsolete, as the party goes to its General Council tonight with a 10-point declaration of principles called 'Our Roots' (L-Gheruq Taghna) and which will supplant 1986's Fehmiet Bazici ('basic principles').

The document will be distributed to PN councillors and presented by secretary-general Paul Borg Olivier tonight. The PN said the new document draws heavily on Fehmiet Bazici, "which remains highly significant even today - amidst the turmoil caused by the worst economic and financial storm in decades, and a constantly changing society. Fehmiet Bazici and today's L-Gheruq Taghna are the PN's political ID.

The president of the General Council, Paula Mifsud Bonnici, said the divorce referendum had sent a clear statement and that the PN's statement against divorce was now history.

"Since that statement, the people have spoken and the PN declared it would respect the people's decision. This document consolidates the respect towards that decision and recognised today's realities by accepting the existence of new forms of families."

The new document was discussed under the auspices of PN think-tank Azad after the PN's last General Council in April.

The new document pledges the party's focus on the family but recognised different bonds of families.

Jeffrey Pullicino Orlando's bill for the introduction of divorce was not embraced by the Nationalist party, after MPs rallied behind Prime Minister's declared opposition to divorce.

Its executive committee had voted in favour of a party motion against divorce, but which gave MPs a free vote on the divorce bill.

The motion states that divorce "was not an idoneous way of how to promote family values."

"The committee declares that the political position of the Nationalist Party should remain in favour of the unity of the family and against the introduction of divorce because it feels that the introduction of divorce is not the best way to promote the value of the family since divorce changes the definition of marriage as being a permanent bond."

The divorce bill was accepted in a referendum by 53% of voters, and later approved by the House of Representatives although Prime Minister still voted against the divorce law.


Our Inspiration - Christian inspiration, but never a confessional party as the party recognizes the separation between Church and State - a healthy separation which must be kept at all times. Neither does the party's Christian inspiration imply the imposition of values or beliefs. 'Our inspiration' is about the values of compassion, truth, justice, tolerance, and empathy.

The person and the family: The person is at the centre of the PN's political action - each individual is complete and equal like any other. The family, remains at the core of the party's political action and at the heart of our society.

Liberty - The PN secured the peoples' right to live in a democratic and pluralistic society. But liberty is not a free-for-all; its abuse leads to disintegration of social cohesion.

Responsibility - synonymous with the PN as evidenced in the past three years when, having to choose between populism and responsibility the Nationalist Party in Government, naturally, opted for the latter - a decision which saved jobs, and helped our country to weather successfully the choppy waters cause by the fierce economic storm.

Solidarity - deeply entrenched in the PN's core beliefs and the bedrock of Maltese society. Time and again, the Nationalist Party has proved to be a country which does not only belief in but practices solidarity.

Subsidiarity - Not a State that interferes in everything or decides on everything, as used to happen in the past - but decisions that are taken at the lowest level and close to the people as much as possible.

Dialogue - a core tenet weaved into the very fabric of the PN - the right of the people to express ideas, ask questions and receive answers.

Trust- Never a given. It needs to be earned and maintained; not through cheap words and meaningless clichés, but through hard work; vision; direction, and for offering solutions rather than baulking at problems.

Direction - with the PN you know where you stand and you know where our politics can take you.

Identity - The PN is proud of our identity and constantly seek to enhance it - not only through the achievement of significant political milestones - Independece and EU membership - but equally important, by deepening our knowledge of our history and whilst protecting our historic and cultural environment.

The PN delivers its core principles and values through10 priority policy areas:

1. The Maltese State and Public Administartion - In order to improve, further, the qualityof life, the State must have well-functioning institutions that work well, are efficient and answerable to the people.

2. A political conscience that leaves no one behind. - Everything revolves around the person and his/her well being. A state that does not discriminate on the basis of sex, colour, creed, and sexual orientation. A state that should legislate to establish the rights and obligations that should govern personal relationships; both heterosexual and homosexual.

3. A strong economy and sound public finances. Work - by far, the most effective tool of solidarity. The past three years have been characterized by the worst economic crisis and financial meltdown in decades. The Nationalist Party in Government invested heavily in maintaining the appropriate environment to create jobs whilst safeguarding thousands on new jobs.

4. Education for a talented, open-minded nation - the fundamental building block of everything; the best and most proved recipe for success.

5. The Environment, Water and Energy- by far, the second fundamental building blocks for the island's future - equally important, the unique challenge of waste and water treatment.

6. Our culture and our identity - they are what make Malta a unique and special place to live in and to visit.

7. Justice and Security - Undisputed vital ingredients for good quality of life

8. Gozo - With its undisputed natural beauty and distinct character which gives Gozo its uniqueness - a jewel in Malta 's crown.

9. Malta's role in the European Union and the World - Malta, not just one of twenty seven member states, but a protagonist and a very valid player in shaping Europe's and its peoples' future.

10. A tribute to Young Malta- Our policies give the younger generation a vision for tomorrow but also a high quality of life today - for before living life tomorrow, we are first living it today.

Society evolves; ideas change; the peoples' aspirations becaome more demanding - as should be. The Nationalist Party does not look back but it too changes, adapts and evolves. Only by doing so can it continue to mould the future of our country - as it has done, successfully, since its inception. However, our values, and our core principles do not change. Our roots remain firmly anchored in place, at the core of our politics with the person at the centre of it all.
Partit Nazzjonalista.

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