Winning the next election

The GSLP annual general meeting was addressed by Alf Lomas, who has been a long standing friend and defender of Gibraltar and is a founder member of the GSLP, and by Glyn Ford MEP, who is a member of the GSLP and the only Labour MEP in the constituency of South West and Gibraltar.

Glyn Ford is standing for re-election to the Strasbourg Parliament and asked people to support him on the basis of a Gibraltar agenda which he unveiled at the meeting. The first important issue is that he took with him a petition which asks the President of the European Parliament to identify the pertinent authorities that can carry out an investigation into the high incidence of cancer in Gibraltar and the Campo which is said by many to be connected to the emissions in the Campo?s industrial zone which includes the CEPSA refinery across the border. Such an investigation would be relevant to the EU because of the cross-border aspect involved.

Ford also said that he would be campaigning for Gibraltar to have its own seat in the European Parliament because there is nothing better for Gibraltar than that it should be directly represented by someone from Gibraltar. He said that the time to ask for this is now because at the time of the introduction of the Lisbon Treaty the United Kingdom will be given one extra seat and argued that this seat should go to Gibraltar. This, he added, would not alter the balance in any UK constituency.

The GSLP say that the meeting also saw a film depicting the many things that continue to be done wrongly by the GSD Government including the mess they are involved in with the beaches on the East Side, the mountains of rubble, the fact that the Dudley Ward Tunnel has been closed to vehicular traffic for nearly eight years now and the sorry state of the site where the grand Theatre Royal once stood. The length of time taken to complete the so-called affordable houses was also depicted as was the fact that the Gibraltar Airport has recently been depicted in the media in Spain as ?Aeropuerto, Campo de Gibralar?.

Joe Bossano was received with warm applause by those present when he gave his key speech which this year was reserved to the theme of the meeting ?Gibraltar Comes First!?.

A big chunk of his address was centred on reports in some sections of the Spanish press which quoted Caruana as contradicting himself on issues related to sovereignty. Bossano re-affirmed the position of the GSLP in totally rejecting the Spanish claim to sovereignty and not having to apologise for taking that stand.

The three other elected members of the GSLP, during their contributions to their respective motions, all expressed both a desire and a confidence that the party would be in a strong position to win the next election in order to pursue the full programme of the party, with the policy decisions taken at the meeting forming part of that programme.