Malta: PM promises legislation on transgender issues
Reposted from Times of Malta: http://www.timesofmalta.com/articles/view/20130228/elections-news/pm-promises-to-address.459586
Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi said this evening that the Nationalist Party was committed to addressing the issues faced by transgender individuals in the next legislature.
Interviewed in Gharghur by Celine Falzon, herself a transsexual, Dr Gonzi was asked why the Government failed to move the Gender Identity Bill presented in Parliament by Labour MP Evarist Bartolo. Dr Gonzi was also asked why there was no reference made to this in the PN's manifesto.
He said there were many Bills that were not made law in Parliament, including items presented by the Government itself. However, he agreed that the situation had to be remedied because there was currently no legal status for those who changed their sex.
Dr Gonzi was also asked about delayed payments for Government business incentives and he acknowledged that bureaucracy had to be addressed because businesses were losing precious time and money. However, he stressed that EU funds had to be distributed very carefully according to strict procedures.
Asked if the PN would change direction if it lost the election, Dr Gonzi began by saying he was working towards a victory and still believed this would happen. However, he said a defeat would obviously force the PN to examine what went wrong.
"Maybe we focused on the bigger picture while not giving enough importance to the things we consider to be small issues but which are big issues for those affected directly," he said. However, the bigger picture was crucial because if one's job was in jeopardy, nothing else counted, he added.
Referring to the debate held by The Times, Dr Gonzi criticised Labour leader Joseph Muscat for saying that the privatisation of the shipyards was a bad idea.
"Dr Muscat is already making mistakes from the Opposition," he quipped, urging young first-time voters not to risk Labour because Malta could end up like Ireland, Greece, Cyprus and many other countries facing immense problems due to their bad decisions.