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GSD reshuffles shadow Cabinet responsibilities

Johnny Bugeja

The Leader of the Opposition, Keith Azopardi, has announced a reorganisation of shadow Cabinet responsibilities to enable the GSD to better respond to “issues which will be centre-stage at the next election”.

As Leader of the Opposition, Keith Azopardi will retain shadow responsibilities for post-Brexit matters, European and International Affairs, Self-determination and United Nations issues, decolonisation and sovereignty, civil rights, constitutional affairs, parliamentary reform and governance, the Public Service, MOD industrial relations, the economy, international tax agreements and exchange of information, personal status and immigration.

In the bigger changes Damon Bossino takes on housing and style of government; Daniel Feetham will take charge of care responsibilities under a newly styled care and opportunity portfolio; Elliott Philips takes on a wider transport brief with new responsibilities for the port, shipping and civil aviation; Edwin Reyes assumes charge of training, employment and special needs and Roy Clinton adds financial services and gaming to his public finance responsibilities in what the GSD described as “a newly styled shadow Ministry of Finance and Value for Money”.

The full newly drawn responsibilities are as follows:

- Damon Bossino: Housing and Lands – Housing, Development and Planning, Urban renewal, Land allocation, heritage, tourism and style of Government issues;
- Roy Clinton: Finance and Value for Money – Public Finance, Public Sector efficiency and procurement; Gibraltar Savings Bank, taxation, inward investment, small business, postal services, telecoms, e-government, financial services, gaming and a special responsibility for value for money;
- Daniel Feetham: Care, Opportunity and Justice – Care [including social services & drugs], the elderly, families, equality, a special responsibility for fairness and opportunity; Justice [including emergency services, civil contingencies, fire, police, customs and borders and coastguard];
- Elliott Phillips: Environment, Transport and Health – Health and Public Health; the Environment; Shipping, the Port, Transport, Utilities, civil aviation;
- Edwin Reyes: Education, Employment, Culture and Sport, including Education, Training, Skills, Employment, Special Needs, Young People, Culture, Sport and Broadcasting.

“There are major issues of domestic concern,” Mr Azopardi said.

“Many people feel left behind.”

“Applicants for housing who don’t feel properly heard or who face a terrible bureaucracy that doesn’t provide solutions; those who feel let down because they don’t have access to opportunities and reject the culture of opportunities only being offered to a privileged few; those who want an effective health service and care system that works and takes account of those with special needs properly.”

“There are people concerned at the financial inconsistencies, economic recklessness of the past and the need for a much greater focus on value for money.”

“There are people concerned about the Gibraltar they live in, the curtailment of freedoms and the culture of fear created by the way the Government like to seek out and stifle critics.”

“There are people very concerned about the need to build an environmentally sustainable Gibraltar – one that is properly planned and can grow economically and provides a better quality of life for citizens.”

“There are people worried about our political and economic future with a Government that has mortgaged our future, is selling the family silver in desperate measures and has repeatedly lost opportunities to secure our political future.”

“These changes focus on all those issues of concern and will allow the Opposition to respond clearly on these issues which will be centre-stage at the next election.”

“This together with other changes that will be announced in months to come will show that the GSD is the clear alternative to this Government and that people should back us to achieve change.”

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