George Farrugia

All the big talk in 2013 by the Labour administration about addressing these misdemeanours was a whole load of claptrap. Some of the individuals in the oil scandal went on to operate freely, issue bonds, expand and become worthy multi-millionaires...

MaltaToday broke the story on the oil scandal in January 2013
MaltaToday broke the story on the oil scandal in January 2013

The front page of MaltaToday talked of George Farrugia, the oil trader who some 10 years ago was talk of town.

To many who don’t follow the news, Farrugia could be the guy next door. To those with some grey hairs, Farrugia is the former associate to a band of brothers who ran John’s Garage from Hamrun. A family well known in their days for being fervent supporters of the PN and prominent Nationalist parliamentarians.

Today most of them are up in arms against the PN and their own brother.

The oil bribery case which MaltaToday reported on its front pages in January 2013 led to police action and court proceedings. Nothing has come out of those proceedings till today. The police should be very proud of themselves.

Ten years is a long time, but I remember the barrage of insults and endless derogatory accusations from those who today pose as knights in shining armour - those who today declare themselves to be journalists but were gate keepers of the State back then. Or those who stood by the PN government and Lawrence Gonzi at all costs and hit out at the messenger and not the story. Farrugia’s wife had worked with Lawrence Gonzi.

There were those who chose to write in favour of a presidential pardon for George Farrugia, the rat in the pack. And this included the whole Nationalist Party of the time, all the independent press, the Church, a TVM presenter and of course the only active blogger at the time.

Today, when I walk and happen to bump into George Farrugia, Tancred Tabone, Ċikku Portelli, Frank Sammut and Austin Gatt, the general sentiment is that I am the bad and nasty guy and that I have wronged them and that they are the victims. They make it seem like I should be the one to apologise, and they should be walking with their heads held high.

Anyone who wants to have a look at what really happened should look back at this story here.

The same follows for all the characters that have been protagonists in many other stories. But the truth is that the Labour government that followed and was elected in 2013 led by Joseph Muscat, together with all the institutions, did fuck all to follow up on this scandal.

Today, the police prosecutors, the Attorney General and the present ruling political class have done nothing, or next to nothing, to speed up the legal process. And today not only are these same people in business but they continue to flourish and make tonnes of money and win public funded tenders.

All the big talk in 2013 by the Labour administration about addressing these misdemeanours was a whole load of claptrap. Some of the individuals mentioned above went on to operate freely, issue bonds, expand and become worthy multi-millionaires or associate themselves with recognised bona fide public companies. Not only that; they continued to be respected as if everything was normal for them.

Never did anyone consider or think, that they should be barred from operating most especially in the specific field they are facing criminal charges in.

Farrugia today is involved in an energy company, whose shareholders are earmarked as recipients of a public multi-million euro project. But this seems okay, it seems. There is not a problem in sight.

Now I wait with some trepidation to see what all the knights in shining armour, harbingers of truth, defenders of the moral majority have to say about this.


In every decision government takes there is always the concern what it will mean in terms of votes. So, I guess when it came to the issue of e-scooters, the decision was considered in terms of how this effects people, and specifically people who vote for the Labour Party. 

So, I can imagine there were two considerations: the first was that e-scooters are a big pain in the ass used primarily by young foreigners who work in Malta and think that the middle of the road is their right. The second consideration was that the company that runs e-scooters as a rental service is a foreign company that makes thousands a day.

The narrative just fits in the argument that a decision of this kind would benefit the Labour government from a voting perspective. And to add perhaps a foot note, the decision about e-scooters is not life changing and does not impinge on the quality of life of Maltese families.

All other noble decisions that require some courage and vision are of course side lined or simply forgotten. Others are simply implemented hoping that time is on the side of the administration.

A perfect example of this is the decision by the Abela administration to allow bird trapping once again in spite of crystal clear declarations by the European Commission that bird trapping should be stopped at once.

But then again, the general feeling in the PL is that no vote can be lost, most especially now when all the surveys are showing there is a large number of Labourites who do not want to vote.

So once again, it is all about prevention, not cure. It is all about stop gap measures.

This is the politics of hiccups I was once told by an elderly man who would sit on the Church parvis in Naxxar and rolled his Maltese cigar over his battered lips as he spoke in a growl voice: “Pulitika tas-sulluzzu, ħija!”


I am happy to be back. Thanks to all those who dropped a note of concern. There is still some fire to light this small contribution once a week.