[WATCH] Abela says his tax returns can already be accessed by the Opposition leader

Prime Minister Robert Abela reacts to calls by Opposition leader Bernard Grech to publish his tax returns, following claims he discussed Grech's situation with tax chief Marvin Gaerty

Prime Minister Robert Abela
Prime Minister Robert Abela

Prime Minister Robert Abela has said that his tax returns can already be accessed by the Opposition leader as they are in the possession of the Speaker of the House.

Abela was reacting to a challenge made by Bernard Grech on Monday, calling on the Prime Minister to publish his income tax and VAT returns.

The exchange between the two leaders follows a report published on Sunday, claiming the Prime Minister had discussed Grech’s tax situation with Tax Commissioner Marvin Gaerty.

Abela has denied discussing Grech’s tax evasion with Gaerty, insisting that he only passed on information he had received from a PN source to the tax authorities.

“Bernard Grech clearly does not know tax legislation, as my tax returns are already in the Speaker’s possession and Grech as an MP already can access my tax returns, as can media houses,” Abela said. 

Abela also refuted the suggestion that he used his positon to influence investigations into Grech’s tax irregularities, insisting that when he had passed on information to Gaerty the investigation had already been concluded.

“Even if I wanted to, I could not influence the investigation,” he said.

READ ALSO: Grech accuses Abela of abusing his power to try and influence PN leadership election

During the summer, Grech was revealed to have evaded paying taxes on different occasions and only settled his outstanding tax bill before submitting his candidature for the PN leadership.

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