‘Over our dead bodies’: Labour MEP squares up to EPP onslaught over Daphne murder

Labour MEP Alex Agius Saliba accuses EPP of punching down on Malta by using ongoing Koħħu testimony name-dropping former Labour minister

Alex Agius Saliba
Alex Agius Saliba

European centre-right politicians have a bone to pick. The European People’s Party wants MEPs to debate the ongoing developments emerging in the Maltese courts on the Caruana Galizia assassination.

The electrifying revelations are sensational in their own right. One of the assassins, Vincent Muscat ‘il-Koħħu’, pleaded guilty to the murder to obtain a pardon on other crimes that involve the other accused hitmen, and the alleged procurers of the bomb, the Agius brothers Adrian and Robert and Jamie Vella. Additionally, Muscat claims the plot to kill Daphne Caruana Galizia had another genesis, with the involvement of the former Labour minister Chris Cardona and one of his former law firm acolytes, David Gatt. Muscat says what he knows was what was relayed to him by accused Alfred Degiorgio, whom he chauffered.

The case is ongoing, yet EPP leader Manfred Weber thinks the matter should be debated in the European Parliament. But Labour MEPs are having none of it, accusing the centre-right and its Maltese MEPs, David Casa and Roberta Metsola, as well as EPP secretary-general Simon Busuttil, the former PN leader, of instrumentalising the court proceedings for their political gain.

“Their priority at the time of a pandemic is to move this resolution against Malta,” Labour MEP Alex Agius Saliba said on One TV’s Pjazza. “And what is its usefulness at a point in time where our institutions are working, with just until a week ago we saw the arrests of three more people in the Caruana Galizia assassination? Our institutions are working, unlike some countries whose interests were nonetheless supported by Metsola and Casa.”

Agius Saliba accused German MEP Manfred Weber, the EPP chair, of ignoring his own party’s problems, referring to four CSU/CDU MPs accused of bribery and corruption on government face-mask procurement deals.

“This is partisan politics aimed at punching down on us at a critical moment, and we tell them ‘over our dead bodies’,” Agius Saliba said.

The Labour MEP was joined this week with a similar reaction to the Weber proposal for a resolution from Labour MEP Cyrus Engerer.

Agius Saliba said the EPP should clean up their own house. “They should clear up their own group from the parties suffocating their countries’ democracy, rather than making a show of our country…”

Nationalist MEPs David Casa and Roberta Metsola have hit back at Labour’s protesations. Casa said his job as MEP Was to defend the reputation of Malta, “not the mafia that runs it. Our duty is to speak up for honest Maltese citizens, fearlessly and without compromise.”

Ewropej Funded by the European Union

This article is part of a content series called Ewropej. This is a multi-newsroom initiative part-funded by the European Parliament to bring the work of the EP closer to the citizens of Malta and keep them informed about matters that affect their daily lives. This article reflects only the author’s view. The European Parliament is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.

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