The Chief Minister has today written to the organisers of yesterday’s “Open Your Eyes” demonstration.
In his letter, the Chief Minister tells the organisers that he does not agree with many of the positions that they have set out in their letter to him but that he, of course, respects their right to hold those views and to demonstrate in support of them. He asks the group to also respect that the Government has been recently elected with a mandate to implement its manifesto.
Mr Picardo tells the organisers that the GSLP/Liberal government considers itself to be ‘of the People and by the People’, something of which it is proud and from which it will not resile.
The Chief Minister notes that the demonstration was supported by some elected members of the GSD and some members of Together Gibraltar, despite the fact that the points raised run counter to some of the explicit policies of those parties. Mr Picardo points out that those parties seem to be trying to politicise the demonstration for partisan ends.
In his letter, Mr Picardo invites the organisers to bring a small group to a meeting if they wish for further discussions on the subjects that they have raised
The Chief Minister said: “I look forward to meeting with the organisers of yesterday’s demonstration in order to try to better explain the Government’s position on some of the issues that they are raising and better hear their views on the subjects. I have also waited to highlight the dishonest way in which members of other political parties are trying to jump on the bandwagon of the demonstration, even though they have policies and positions which directly contradict some of the things the demo was designed to address. This applies as much to the two political parties in opposition who are disrespectful of those attending the demo in believing that they can pull the wool over their eyes by using them for their partisan ends. Frankly, I would hope that those attending the demo and those watching the scenes in the media will have seen through those politicians who have been pictured amongst the crowds and who have marched against their very own policies! I am sure that when I meet with members of this group, if they have an open mind, they will understand what the Government is doing, why we are doing it and the direct mandate we have to do these things having obtained more than half again the votes of the other political parties standing at the last election. We take our mandate seriously and we will never let the People of Gibraltar down, although we accept that we cannot please everyone all of the time!”