[WATCH] Anglu Farrugia to be retained as Speaker

Robert Abela says he sees no need for change in the role of Speaker, Anglu Farrugia to be retained

Speaker Anglu Farrugia will be retained for the next legislature
Speaker Anglu Farrugia will be retained for the next legislature

Anglu Farrugia is expected to be retained as Speaker of the House with Prime Minister Robert Abela saying on Thursday he sees no reason for change.

Farrugia was appointed Speaker in 2013 and reconfirmed in the role after the 2017 election.

Abela told journalists after this morning’s swearing-in ceremony of two new parliamentary secretaries that Farrugia enacted important reforms that gave parliament administrative autonomy. “I don’t see the need for change in the role,” he added.

Speculation had been mounting since the election as to who would occupy the post, with former minister Michael Farrugia’s name being floated in some circles.

But it appears that the government has decided to stick with Farrugia.

The Speaker is chosen by parliament through a simple majority vote in the first sitting of the new legislature.

Farrugia raised eyebrows in the last legislature over the ethics case involving Rosianne Cutajar. The parliamentary committee chaired by Farrugia had agreed with the findings of the Standards Commissioner that Cutajar breached ethics and had to be reprimanded. But the letter containing the reprimand, which Farrugia wrote, was meek and merely informed the MP of the committee’s decision. The Speaker’s letter was called “pathetic” by Matthew Caruana Galizia, who accused Farrugia of defending corrupt politicians.

The ethics breach was sparked by Cutajar’s involvement as a broker of sorts in a property deal entered into by Daphne Caruana Galizia murder suspect Yorgen Fenech. During the investigation by the Standard’s Commissioner it resulted that Cutajar had received a monetary gift from Fenech, which she failed to declare to parliament.

READ ALSO: Speaker should resign for ‘pathetic’ Cutajar reprimand letter, says Caruana Galizia