MEET THE CANDIDATES: 10 Questions With Bernard Grech
Updated: Mar 11
SideStreet Malta sits down with leader of the Opposition Bernard Grech before the 2022 general election to ask 10 questions as part of our 'Meet the Candidates' series.
Q1: What makes you proud to be Maltese?
Most of all, our resilience as a country, but also solidarity that we show each other whenever there is need.
Q2: In the next couple of years, which social issue merits more of our time and attention?
Definitely, mental health. This is an issue has been with us, of course, for long. But during the pandemic, we have experienced that this issue has reached new levels and we are focused to address this issue. We are interested and we have much at heart the wellbeing of people and in this sense we need to look at our country, we have to look at the way we live. We have to make sure that we take this head on in a holistic way.
Q3: What has been your most memorable moment in politics so far?
I believe that it was our win, if I may call it with with regards to IVF. We discovered that it was not true that the government was paying for all the medication of IVF, and after they said it was not true, we persisted and now the government has conceded that it is going to be paying, hopefully in the next coming months for the IVF treatment, including medication for all those couples that would like to have a baby.
Q4: If you had to go for a beer with a member of the rival party, who would it be
and what would you talk about?
I think I choose the Prime Minister Robert Abela, and perhaps I would have the opportunity to discuss with him things that he is otherwise afraid to do so in person,
because he has never accepted to debate me in public.
Q5: What is your ultimate comfort food?
Unfortunately, I am too comfortable with with almost all food, but if I had to choose, I'd rather have anything coming out from our wood oven at home, pizza and roast potatoes and the rest.
Q6: What did you learn about yourself over the course of the pandemic?
Well, I have learned I always knew that I love people. I love to meet people. But I've learned, especially during the first few months that I can't live without meeting people every day.
Q7: Describe the last time you felt embarrassed and why?
Um, a few weeks ago, I was in a home visit, and unfortunately I mistook somebody's wife to be his mother. I saw the look on his face and he wasn't too happy about that. And she wasn't happy either I think she was livid, although she kept smiling politely.
Q8: What do you think your 18 year-old self would think of you now?
I think, to be quite honest, my 18 year-old self would be proud of what I managed to achieve and of course, what went through in my life, and I would live every day
the same way I did in the past years.
Q9: Which foreign leader do you admire and why?
I would say Angela Merkel, notwithstanding her humility, she was steadfast to keep stability in Europe and she has managed to do so over several years. And the last time I met her, I had the opportunity to speak about this with her as well.
Q10: Can you show us your screen time, i.e., how many hours you spend on your phone?
I hope I manage to do this um, today is just 2 hours, 6 minutes. But let's see. Sunday, it's 5 hours Monday, 4 hours. Tuesday, almost 6 hours. Another 5 hours on Wednesday?Yesterday, 3 hours. And today, just 2 hours. 6 minutes.
Are you happy with those results?
Well, I think it's reasonable, no? Considering that we're attached to our phone all day long.
Bonus Q: Why should young people vote for you?
I am determined to make Malta, a better place to live, especially for our youth. I want them to go abroad. I want them to make new experiences, widen their horizons. But I would like them also to make Malta their home. I would like them to start their business here. I would like them to study here. I would like them to grow here. And I would like them to be the better version of themselves, because I believe that together we can bring the change and make Malta better again.