The government will be presenting the white paper on Vote 16 by March of next year paving the way for a potential 5,000 new voters to have their say in upcoming elections. Prime Minister Joseph Muscat announced this while attending a student debate at the Giovanni Curmi Higher Secondary in Naxxar. The topic was Vote 16 and students were allowed to ask questions to the Prime Minister who was accompanied by Parliamentary Secretary for Reform Julia Farrugia Portelli and the Parliamentary Secretary for Youth Clifton Grima. The Prime Minister said that the vote for 16-year-olds is no longer an issue of whether it will happen or not, but how will it be implemented. “We have a mandate to do pass Vote 16 and we intend to keep our promise.”
Muscat said that he hopes that the 2019 MEP elections will see the participation of 16-year-old voters. Malta will be the second EU country to have the participation of new young voters. The participation of 16-year-old voters will result in an increase of 5,000 votes. “You will be making history”, Muscat told those students present.
Muscat encouraged students to involve themselves in politics and to keep themselves updated on what is happening around the globe. He said that often, young people tend to discourage themselves from participating in politics because of all the hate towards persons who are politically exposed.