Joseph Muscat received €60,000 from Swiss firm linked to Steward Healthcare

Steward Healthcare wired millions to the Swiss company during the hospitals takeover, and the Swiss firm paid tens of thousands to Joseph Muscat shortly after

Former Prime Minister Joseph Muscat received €60,000 from a Swiss company who had in turn received millions from Steward Healthcare when it took over the VGH hospitals deal.

Shortly after stepping down as Prime Minister, Joseph Muscat was paid thousands through a Swiss company that first received €3.6 million from Steward Healthcare.

The Times of Malta reports that the first payment, valued at €15,000, was transferred to Muscat’s account in March 2020, two months after his formal resignation as Labour Party leader.

The rest of the payments were split. In total, Muscat received four monthly payments. Two came from Accutor AG and Spring X Media.

These two companies were run by the same person, lawyer Wasay Bhatti, and both held the same address in Switzerland. According to the Times of Malta, these two companies would transfer money between each other.

Bhatti would often brag about his proximity to Muscat and his former chief of staff Keith Schembri, according to a former Accutor Malta employee.

And email correspondence between Bhatti and Yorgen Fenech gives the claim further credence. After Fenech was outed as the owner of 17 Black, he reached out to Bhatti for help in moving his money out of the Ajman Region, where his 17 Black company was registered.

In his email, he said he was referred to Bhatti by a “common friend from Malta”.

On paper, the payments were made under the terms of an indefinite consultancy contract drafted between him and Spring X Media in February 2020.  But despite the indefinite nature of the contract, the payments stopped abruptly in summer last year.

While Joseph Muscat was no longer Prime Minister when he received these payments, he was still an MP at the time of the contract.

‘All work and payments are fully declared’ – Joseph Muscat

LIL HEMM MIT-TITLU Fil-jiem li għaddew, The Times of Malta staqsewni dwar xogħol li għamilt wara li spiċċajt minn Prim...

Posted by Joseph Muscat on Sunday, November 7, 2021

Joseph Muscat hit out at the fact that the report’s headline failed to say he carried out work for the company. “It implies I was given money for nothing or as supposed compensation for a transaction worth millions.”

“The payments I received for assignments carried out over a number of months are nowhere near these amounts. But whoever gleams the headline is left unaware of this.”

Muscat insisted that the work he carried out “over a number of months” was not related to government projects in Malta, and said that all payments are fully declared.