AD decry ‘misuse’ of Armed Forces’ aeroplane for EPP benefit

OPM insists that no Air Malta flights for Palermo conference were available.

The AFM Hawker Beechcraft King Air.
The AFM Hawker Beechcraft King Air.

Alternattiva Demokratika's spokesperson for home affairs has questioned the use of an army aircraft for the Prime Minister's visit to the European People's Party conference in Palermo, last year.

The OPM confirmed to newspaper Illum that the army's €9.6 million Hawker Beechcraft King Air, part-funded by the EU's External Borders Fund to aid migration border controls, was used by the prime minister for his EPP junket.

The trip took place on 4 May 2011, at 7:45am.

Carmel Cacopardo, AD spokesman for sustainable development and home

Affairs, stated that if the allegation was correct this would amount to misuse of public property "which instead of being utilized for its proper purpose has been used for the exclusive benefit of a political party."

The EPP conference is a non-state conference, but the OPM said that the prime minister was scheduled to return to Malta that same evening to address a 2,000-person conference for the International Council of Nursing.

Additionally, Air Malta did not operate any flights to Palermo to 4 May, 2011.

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Whether or not Air MAlta flights were available, Gonzi should pay for his own transport because he was not going on official Government business but to a meeting of the EPP of which his party is a member. This is illegal use of Malta's money by the Prime Minister. If a person takes a paper with the Government watermark s/he will be accused of misusing Government property. What about the Prime Minister?
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Rather than 'misuse' the appropriate word is 'malfeasance'. I do not pay taxes so that a party official can attend a non governmental related meeting. This is very very serious.What is even more worrying is that the party in question does not deem to have done anything wrong. Same as when Tonio Fenech went to support Arsenal utilising Gasan's plane!!! Shameful to say the least.