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MALTATODAY 7 April 2024

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YOUR RIGHT TO KNOW WWW.MALTATODAY.COM.MT SUNDAY 7 APRIL 2024 • ISSUE 1274 • PUBLISHED EVERY WEDNESDAY AND SUNDAY Who was the biggest earner after leaving parliament? PAGES 10 - 11 Junctions leading to Savoy Hill facing gridlock by 2033 PAGES 8 - 9 No answer from Transport Malta on missing and tampered fines PAGE 5 Income wars Congestion Silence maltatoday President should not influence public debate on hot legislation MaltaToday survey An EU army not for Malta MALTA'S new president hints she will not stand in the way of ethically con- tentious legislation but says she would rather take a step back to avoid influ- encing public debate. "Everyone has ethical red lines," Pres- ident Myriam Spiteri Debono said in a first interview with MaltaToday, when asked whether she had any red lines like her predecessor. But she cautiously avoided getting into a debate on abortion when specif- ically asked about the matter. "I think the president needs to be cautious and take a few steps back not to influence public discussions and allow freedom for the public to air its opinions," she said. Her predecessor George Vella made it very clear towards the beginning of his presidency that he had a red line that he would not cross: abortion and other reproductive controversies. When the government tried to pass a Bill introducing abortion under strict circumstances, he threatened to resign and leave the presidential office vacant. The Bill was eventually amended to re- move the contentious aspect. "I am not in a position to, and I don't feel that I should judge what his ex- cellency George Vella did," she said. "Everyone needs to remember that, when you are president, you have a constitutional role, and you are also a citizen with a right to freedom of con- science." CONTINUES PAGE 3 FULL INTERVIEW MT2 EUROPEAN defence and increased military spending are turning out to be hot is- sues in the run-up to the Eu- ropean Parliament election on 8 June even in Malta. The two main parties have sparred on the matter with the Labour Party accusing the Nationalist Party of sup- porting the creation of an EU army and the PN rebutting that improved European de- fence also benefits Malta. A MaltaToday survey found that Maltese voters are not against the creation of an EU army. Indeed, 42% support such a development. However, the numbers change when voters are asked whether Malta should be part of an EU army. Half argue against Malta's partic- ipation and an even stronger majority of 55% are opposed to Maltese participation in military action to defend a fellow EU member state at- tacked by an external power. The survey also finds dif- ferences based on political affiliation, age and educa- tional status. SEE THE FULL SURVEY RESULTS PAGES 13 - 15 JAMES DEBONO President Myriam Spiteri Debono sat down with MaltaToday for an interview in which we asked her on abortion, Daphne Caruana Galizia and the next five years NICOLE MEILAK Myriam Spiteri Debono €1.95

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