While we were going through a pandemic and an economic crisis, Robert Abela was busy plotting and scheming against his critics and adversaries in the Labour Party. One Robert Abela’s first acts in office as Prime Minister was to prompt the Auditor-General to start an investigation on Chris Fearne’s top official: Carmen Ciantar. Carmen Ciantar is the CEO of the Foundation for Medical Services and Chris Fearne’s generalissimo who runs the Ministry of Health and is one of the most highly-paid government officials raking in a salary equivalent to other government CEOs such as Kurt Farrugia (Malta Enterprise), Johann Buttigieg (Malta Tourism Authority), Frederick Azzopardi (Infrastructure Malta), Jonathan Cardona (Enemalta), Paul Bugeja (MedAir), David Curmi (AirMalta) and others.
I will not in any way justify Carmen Cinatar’s contract. I think it’s wrong and Carmen should see to stop embarrassing our stalwart at the Labour Party. However, this story is not about Carmen Ciantar- it’s about the Prime Minister. Carmen Cinatar’s salary was no news – it was already known even to the press. This story is about how the Prime Minister is wrecking the country and the Labour Party by gamifying politics in his own personal interest.
Carmen Ciantar’s contract was a process inherited from Joseph Muscat’s rent-seeking boom where top government CEOs could rake in mega-salaries: a practice that has its origins under Lawrence Gonzi’s Nationalist administration. Robert Abela never complained in cabinet about the mega-salaries of government CEOs and was actually one of the most popular rent-seekers in the public sector who has received “consultancy” contracts worth millions of Euros. As a Prime Minister and head of the executive, he could have easily changed this practice, but instead, he prompted an investigation by the auditor-general to get back at his adversary. Robert Abela had no qualms about disrupting the Health Ministry during the Covid pandemic. He also tried to find replacements to Chris Fearne but the persons whom he offered the post of Health Minister didn’t even entertain the thought and refused it outright.
There were also many others who made their rejections. Prior to appointing some of his useless propagandists as MPs, Robert asked some liberal-minded Labourites to join him in Parliament: they refused him too saying they could never take a seat next Rosianne Cutajar or Edward Żammit Lewis.
When Robert calls for unity at the Party meetings he is not referring to the traditional form of unity in the Labour Party where a varied forms of political groups in the Labour Party were united under common goals: his form of unity is absolute and unyielding loyalty to him. The worse part of Robert Abela, however is not that he is an autocrat who plays games against his adversaries, the worst part of Robert is that he doesn’t have any political ideology or beliefs at all. He has no vision for the country and entered the big game of politics solely out of vanity and personal ambition. While Robert Abela wrecks the Labour Party by purging his Party critics, Abela is wrecking the country and he is mainly doing this by bringing into the fore of politics new politicians who are as dumb as him and have nothing to contribute to the country other than unyielding loyalty to the Party leader.
Overall, the results of Robert Abela as the dumb infant Prime Minister who is playing games in politics is reflected in his discourse, speech and political acts and they are seriously consequential. The immediate effect is the lowering of the IQ across the political class and the dumbification of political discourse.
The response of Robert Abela to the Nationalist Party’s proposals on rule of law is alarming and proves my point. Instead of opening a serious and constructive dialogue on the restoration of rule of law, Robert Abela attacked the PN’s proposals in the most infantile and ridiculous way and rejected outright the possibility to discuss them in Parliament. He also goes on to lie and say that he is in dialogue with stakeholders of the media and publishing industry over new reforms, a process that exists only in his fantasy world.
This is not the time to have an infantile Prime Minister playing stupid games. We need a Prime Minister who is capable of opening a proper and national dialogue to restore rule of law and get us out of the myriad of crises we are in. Robert Abela is not the right man to lead the country and we should make it a point to remove him from office so as to start the proper reconstruction f our country.