NEWS In less than two weeks, on Saturday 24 May, Maltese citizens eligible to vote in European Parliament elections will be electing six Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) to represent them for the next five years. At the last elections in 2009 four MEPs were elected from the Labour Party and two from the Nationalist Party.
As the European Union seeks to pull through the economic crisis and EU leaders reflect on what direction to take in future, these are the most important European elections to date.
They not only allow voters to pass judgment on EU leaders’ efforts to tackle the eurozone crisis and to express their views on plans for closer economic and political integration; they are also the first elections since the Lisbon Treaty of 2009 gave the European Parliament a number of important new powers.
One major new development introduced by the Treaty is that, when the EU member states nominate the next president of the European Commission to succeed José Manuel Barroso in autumn 2014, they will – for the first time – have to take account of the European election results. The new Parliament must endorse this candidate: it ‘elects’ the Commission president, in the words of the Treaty. This means voters now have a clear say in who takes over at the helm of EU government.
The new political majority that emerges from the elections will also shape European legislation over the next five years in areas from the single market to civil liberties. The Parliament – the only directly elected EU institution – is now a linchpin of the European decision-making system and has an equal say with national governments on nearly all EU laws.
For more information visit http://www.elections2014.eu/en (in English), http://www.elections2014.eu/mt (in Maltese) or http://www.facebook.com/ParlamentEwropew (in English and Maltese).
Maltese to vote in European Parliament election on 24 May
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