Gozo minister warns Salvu Mallia's 'rude' comments will consign PN to electoral defeat

Gozo minister Anton Refalo warns rude comments by Salvu Mallia will help consign PN to another defeat at the polls, announces plans to set up government entity to attract financial services companies to Gozo 

Gozo minister Anton Refalo has rebuked PN candidate Salvu Mallia for describing Joseph Muscat as “Malta's worst ever disaster since the plague”, warning that such comments will doom the Opposition to another electoral defeat.

Addressing a PN political activity in Victoria on Sunday, his first public speech since he was approved as an election candidate, Mallia denounced the Prime Minister as a “parasite created by the Labour Party” who has “taken people for a ride”.

“Joseph Muscat is the worst disaster to befall Malta ever since the 1813 plague. He is a parasite created by the Labour Party. Under his leadership, the Labour Party is devoid of a moral compass and a social soul.

“Muscat’s aim is to convey the same deceitful message that he used to win the election … The government is creating a smokescreen to distort the corruption scandals that have engulfed the country, and only seeks to appease the corrupt clique who opened accounts in Panama,” Mallia said in a dig at minister Konrad Mizzi and OPM chief of staff Keith Schembri.

However, Refalo said in Parliament that the mere fact that Simon Busuttil brought Salvu Mallia over to deliver a political speech in Gozo betrayed the Opposition leader’s lack of vision for the island’s future.

Gozo minister Anton Refalo has hit out at the PN for cheering Salvu Mallia on
Gozo minister Anton Refalo has hit out at the PN for cheering Salvu Mallia on

“I had expected Busuttil to bring a Gozitan star candidate to address a political activity in Gozo, but instead he brought over Salvu Mallia to insult the Prime Minister in such a rude fashion,” he said. “The PN have fallen to such an extreme position that they actually cheered those comments. Where is their vision for Gozo? How can they expect the Gozitan people to trust them to lead the country?”

Refalo was speaking in Parliament during a debate on the 2017 Budget estimates for the Gozo ministry, during which he toasted the Labour government’s economic achievements for Malta’s sister island.

He also announced plans to set up a government entity ‘Financial Services Gozo’ that will try and attract foreign financial services companies to Gozo.

“The government believes in Gozo’s potential to attract high-quality investment, and our plan is to promote the island as a centre for financial services companies,” he said.