06 August 2003

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PM laughs off resignation rumours

By Kurt Sansone
The Prime Minister on Monday dispelled rumours about his supposed resignation, insisting that he intended to continue serving the country.
The Prime Minister laughed when asked by The Malta
Financial and Business Times whether he would be reflecting on his own personal political future during the summer recess.
"I have always said that I am in politics to serve. We have just come out of an election where the people have entrusted me to serve and I intend to continue giving my service," Dr Fenech Adami answered with no hint of stepping down.
Rumours that Dr Eddie Fenech Adami would resign before 1 May 2004 have been spreading since the election and were in part fuelled by the Prime Minister’s absence from the public sphere.
Monday’s press conference at Castille at the end of the last Cabinet meeting before the summer recess reserved nothing newsworthy, except perhaps, an admission that government was to dedicate more energy to solving the financial deficit.
The press conference was more of a public statement by Dr Fenech Adami that he was still in command. Trying to shed the low profile adopted after the election, Dr Fenech Adami wanted to show that he still had his feet on the ground. The public appearance came at a time of uncertainty caused by the bad news on public finances and the controversy over the siting of two interim landfills next to Mnajdra.
Meanwhile, the Prime minister admitted that cabinet discussed a number of measures to tackle the growing public deficit. Dr Fenech Adami did not elaborate on the measures but said that in September Minister Dalli would be working with the other ministers to start drafting the budget for next year.
The Prime minister also said that the long-drawn referendum and election campaigns had possibly contributed to the worsening of public finances.
Referring to the landfill controversy, Dr Fenech Adami stood by the decision taken to create two temporary landfills next to Mnajdra and said that it was now up to MEPA to determine whether the application was acceptable.
Government ministers now go into sleep mode for their holidays but come September they will have some hard decisions to take and time may not be entirely on their side.

Copyright © Newsworks Ltd. Malta.
Editor: Saviour Balzan
The Malta Financial & Business Times, Newsworks Ltd, Vjal ir-Rihan, San Gwann
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