CHIEF Minister Fabian Picardo gave a fiery speech where he said it was ‘all-go for the GSLP/Liberal government’ as parliament opened Friday.
He said that his government was ready to deliver his Alliance’s election manifesto and move forward with parliamentary reform in what would ‘undoubtedly’ be his last term in office.
And he promised to work hard on finishing off the EU treaty as Spain’s Pedro Sanchez could now finally be ready to return as President with Catalan support.
It was part of a ceremonial day when new faces on both benches and even in the Speaker’s chair played a part.
As is traditional during the opening of parliament, the mace was brought in and placed in the centre of the proceedings before the speeches.
Then, all the MPs came forward to take the oath of allegiance to King Charles III under the guidance of the Chief Justice of Gibraltar.
Over half of the MPs are new to parliament, giving them their first taste of the formality of the institution that will become a regular place of work for the next four years.
Sir Joe Bossano sat in the Speaker’s chair as the father of parliament before the new Speaker came to her position.
Picardo said that Bossano might have already broken a Guinness record-holder for being in parliament for 51 years.
“There are few 84 year olds that can still fill any auditorium that they address, Mick Jagger, Paul McCartney, and Joe Bossano,” the Chief Minister quipped.
Then he spoke highly of the first woman to be Speaker of Parliament, Karen Rammage.
“To be the first woman stipendiary magistrate in Gibraltar, the first woman Supreme Court judge is an extraordinary record,” Picardo said.
“I have absolutely no doubt that Karen Rammage will have the respect of this place as she has held the respect of the Supreme Court.”
Rammage then took the oath of allegiance herself and spoke about how women had come into public life.
“We need to have the opportunity and when that opportunity presents itself, we need to take the momentum and grab it with both hands,” she said.
Finally, the governor Sir David Steel arrived at the parliament after inspecting the police guard.
He congratulated the Speaker and recognised her ‘empathy and humanity’ before commenting on the ‘fascinating’ election he experienced.
Then Steel declared the first session of Gibraltar’s Parliament of this term open.