An exclusive strategy for Gozo – Joseph Muscat
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“Labour will be giving particular relevance to Gozo in the huge task ahead of it as it builds a new political season. This is why I’ve begun my journey, which will take me all around the Maltese Islands, here in Gozo,” new Labour Leader, Joseph Muscat said this morning as he started his tour called ‘Meeting with you’.
Dr Muscat visited Ghajnsielem, Qala, Nadur, Xaghra, Xewkija, Sannat, Kercem, San Lawrenz, Gharb, Zebbug and Victoria.
Dr Muscat said that the launch of this political journey in Gozo is confirmation of Labour’s and his own personal commitment to the interests of the sister island. He added that he wants the interests of the Gozitans to be at the centre of the foundations on which the new political season is going to be built.
Dr Muscat said that he wanted to thank the Gozitan electorate for the significant increase in support it had given Labour during the last General Elections. In Gozo he said, Labour increased its votes by 1000 which is equivalent to a two per cent increase over 2003.
Dr Muscat said that he wanted to draw up an exclusive strategy for Gozo due to the specific challenges it is facing. Adding that up to a few years ago the number of unemployed in Gozo rarely exceeded 500. However, since 2004 the number of unemployed was always between 600 and 700 except for three months and there were even 19 months when unemployment was more the 700 in Gozo.
Dr Muscat continued to say that while the total number of people under 30 who are unemployed amount to 32% of those out of work, in Gozo it accounts for 42% of the unemployed population. At the same time the unemployment rate is twice that of Malta. Dr Muscat said that this is happening after the Prime Minister, Dr Lawrence Gonzi, has been promising projects which will create more employment opportunities here in Gozo since 2004.
Dr Muscat went on to say, “my message is a clear one, our country needs a new political season whereby promises made to the people of Malta and Gozo are kept.” On the other hand we need a new politics in which we all put the best interests of the country first and foremost. Dr Muscat emphasised that he does not want Labour to win because the country is going backwards, Labour should win because it will show how it can take the country forward.
Dr Muscat, was accompanied on his visit to Gozo by the newly elected Deputy Leaders Dr Anglu Farrugia and Dr Toni Abela, Labour President Stefan Zrinzo Azzopardi and General Secretary, Jason Micallef.