Arnold Cassola requests standards investigation into Silvio Schembri over ministerial secretariat

Independent candidate Cassola writes to the Standards Commissioner into Silvio Schembri for deploying members of his ministerial secretariat to his constituency office

Independent election candidate Arnold Cassola has requested a standards investigation into Minister Silvio Schembri after he insinuated in parliament that he is deploying members of his ministerial secretariat to his constituency office.

Cassola put forward his request to the Standards Commission on Monday evening, asking for an investigation into Schembri’s conduct regarding the use of this office.

“Unfortunately, this dirty political behaviour has become the order of the day,” Cassola remarked.

His request centres around a parliamentary question put forward by Nationalist MP Rebekah Borg last week to the minister. She asked whether the minister is using government-paid employees to run his constitutency office in Luqa.

“Like every other minister, you have officials that work with you in your secretariat. They’re there to help you in your work, and part of your work means being close to the people,” Schembri insisted. “I know the Nationalist Party doesn’t like how close we are to the people, but this is how we keep people on our side.”

Members of the ministerial secretariat are on government payroll, receiving an official salary from public coffers.