Monday, April 14, 2014, 18:01
Opposition leader Simon Busuttil confirmed this afternoon that the Opposition would abstain in this evening's final vote in Parliament on the Civil Unions Bill.
He said that although the Opposition agreed with civil unions, it had reservations regarding child adoptions by gay couples and felt this issue deserved more study.
He said there were different views within the PN parliamentary group and a free vote was considered, but the group would be united this evening when the vote is taken.
Dr Busuttil said he was sure the Opposition was reflecting the views of society, with 80 per cent of respondents having declared in a survey that they were concerned about gay adoptions.
He said the government had every opportunity to work with opposition but chose a road that divided.
In a reaction to Dr Busuttil's comments, Prime Minister Joseph Muscat in a tweet said: "There is no such thing as a' la carte equality. You either believe in it or not. We do."
GAY COMMUNITY PREPARES TO PARTY
Dr Busuttil made his statement with the PN parliamentary group at the entrance of the Chamber of Parliament while on Palace Square, the gay community prepared to celebrate the expected approval of the law which will place gay couples on a par with married ones.
The LGBT community expects some 1,000 people to turn up for its celebrations. A programme prepared by the Malta Gay Rights Movement starts at 8.30pm and will feature entertainers Ray Calleja, Chunky, Glen Vella, Claudia Faniello, Amber, Davinia, Daniel Testa, Muxu and Renato.
The MGRM is inviting those present to wear wedding attire.
Earlier today, former Nationalist MP Karl Gouder, a senior official within the party, said in a tweet: "Today is an important Day for Malta, just wish that the party I love so much could have done more to get to this day."
Edward Demicoli, a former PN candidate for the Europeran Parliament elections agreed with Mr Gouder. He said on Facebook: "Agree wholeheartedly. On social issues our party is on the wrong side of history."