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Gloves off as Picardo wraps up budget session

Chief Minister Fabian Picardo yesterday lambasted the GSD for its “inherently contradictory” parliamentary opposition, which he said lacked substance and vision.

During a sweeping three-hour closing address at the end of a four-day budget session in the Gibraltar Parliament, Mr Picardo pulled few punches as he sought to counter the GSD’s attacks on public finances and government debt.

“This is a time for substance, but unfortunately that is not what we got from them,” he said.

He dismissed Daniel Feetham’s call for the government to rethink its manifesto commitments in the wake of the Brexit vote, insisting the GSD leader was “advocating austerity” despite the GSLP/Liberals’ “prudent” spending plans.

And he said that despite Mr Feetham’s position, other GSD MPs had chastised the government for not meeting its manifesto promises, “never mind that we are only six months in.”

The Opposition’s contributions to the budget debate, Mr Picardo said, were “…inherently contradictory in a way that I have never seen in this House.”

“But that’s what happens when there isn’t leadership,” he added, in a swipe at Mr Feetham.

The GSD, he added, was “…so inherently contradictory, no one knows what it is that they stand for.”

Mr Picardo insisted that the Gibraltar Government was constantly reviewing its projects after the Brexit vote and had adopted a cautious approach to the budget.

He said government spending was focused on buttressing the existing economy while generating new business ahead of the Brexit challenge.

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