PN takes new MEP to task over court proceedings in OLAF tickets' probe

Nationalist Party deputy leader Simon Busuttil says Claudette Abela Baldacchino’s election as MEP "shames Malta before Europe"

Both the Nationalist Party and deputy leader Simon Busuttil slammed Labour over the election of Claudette Abela Baldacchino to the European Parliament in a casual election that was held on Wednesday.

Busuttil was speaking in parliament that same day, where he criticised Abela Baldacchino's election in the light of court proceedings instituted against members of the Local Councils' Associatio, for fraud on the payment of air tickets for LCA members following a funds probe by anti-fraud agency OLAF.

Busuttil expressed concern that despite these accusations hanging over her head, she was still allowed to contest the casual elections.

"Labour has allowed her to contest the MEP election despite the fact that she had not contested the Qrendi local council elections for that selfsame reason."

Busuttil also questioned whether Labour had opted to push her candidature specifically so that she would be able to benefit from parliamentary immunity, which he said would mean the case would not continnue.

"Will the government now apply to have this immunity lifted?" Busuttil queried.

Busuttil's statements were met with equal opprobrium from the government benches.

While government whip Carmelo Abela interjected to underscore the legal principle of 'innocent until proven guilty', Home Affairs Minister Manuel Mallia reminded Busuttil that so far Abela Baldacchino had been only accused - and not found guilty of the charges she is facing.

Undeterred, Busuttil kept up the pressure, saying government's ambition to make Malta "a centre of excellence in Europe" had been betrayed by fielding Abela Baldacchino. "I am raising doubts of how ethical this candidature was, and that Abela Baldacchino should have refrained from contesting until her name is cleared. Isn't this what moral ethics is all about? It boils down to having a moral obligation and willingness to step back, instead of ridiculing Malta before Brussels."

Busuttil said Labour either did not take the EP seriously "or now that the elections are behind us, Labour feels it is in a position to do whatever it wants."

In a statement issued that same evening, the Nationalist Party criticised Labour for Abela Baldacchino's election to the European Parliament.

"Prime Minister Joseph Muscat found no difficulty in allowing her to contest the election. This is the same Muscat who, in other occasions, stopped others accused facing criminal charges, from contesting elections in on the PL ticket, and others were even ejected from the party," the PN said.

"Correctness would have required that Muscat stopped Abela Baldacchino, who is accused of fraud, from contesting this election. But Muscat chose otherwise - and applied a different yardstick in Abela Baldacchino's regard."

The PN said that "this is another example of Muscat's inconsistency - two weights to measures - a way of doing politics that bases itself on faces."

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Ara mhux ta' b'xejn qalawilek Busullotti. Jien hsibt li se tkun ragel u tghidilna rigward dawk il-HAMES miljuni li siehbek cuc malti Tonio ghadda lix-Shell minn barra il-Qorti. Din ix-Shell hi rappresentata minnhek . Biex titfa it-tajn m'hawnx bhalhek. B'Claudette tkazajt ? Din sieheb meta Franco gie jiccalengjak u int bhal tigiega mxarba bqajt gol-aquarium u lanqas azzardajt tghid kelma. J'Alla titla int leader tal-pn ghax ibqa zgur li il-labour jibqa fil-gvern sa l-ahhar tas-seklu.
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Fuq il kaz ta Dalli ma tkellimt xejn Simon! Ghajdilna x'tahseb please. U fuq Vince Farrugia xi tghid?
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Ara vera ma tghallimt xejn mit-tkaxkira papali li hadtu xahar u nofs ilu. Kompli sejjer hekk Dr. Busuttil. Nawguralek li tilhaq Kap issa, halli darba ohra it-tkaxkira tkun ferm akbar. Ahjar l-ewwel tara x'hemm hazin fil-partit tieghek qabel tikritika lill haddiehor, ghax ghandhekk x'tigdem bi snienek biex tnadfu l-partit mill arroganza u thallsu dawk id-djun Dr. Busuttil.
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I agree 100% with Dr. Busuttil,BUT, how come you and your party did not block Vince Farrugia from forwarding his candidature ?. have you forgotten his saucy involvement in court ?. Two weights two measures, honorable member ?. Hypocricy won't lead you anywhere.
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Imma dawn b'min iridu jitmejlu dawn in-nies? Veru trid tkun wiċċek imċappas bil-ĦAMA bie ma nuzax kelma oħra,biex tiġi tgħid lil-PL ma jmissux ħalli lill-Mrs Abela Baldacchino tikkontesta din l-elezzjoni kazwali għax hemm akkuza ta' frodi kontra tagħha. L-ewwel ħaġa akkuza mhix kundanna,mela allura hija meqjusa bħala persuna innoċenti.It-tieni,jista jgħidilna dan Simon għaliex il-PN ħalla lill-Vince Farrugia jikkontesta wara dak kollu li ħareġ fil-qorti fejn diversi xhieda allegaw li Vince Farrugia tagħhom struzzjonijiet biex jigdbu fix-xhieda tagħhom. Li kieku Vince Farrugia gie elett f'din l-elezzjoni kazwali,x'kien ikun il-kumment ta' Simon Busuttil? Tgħid kien jgħid li Vince Farrugia se jħammrilna wiċċna?
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"Moral ethics and obligations" my foot.Mr Busuttil which your party never had.And do you know who is ridiculing Brussels your friends Kessler and Barroso.
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Nestor: the English language (purportedly) you've used here is laughable my friend. If you actually wrote this stuff I suggest you either go and learn English or write in a language you know! two weights to measures!; "handing over her heard"......indeed.....there's a few others too! Also "meaning" is wrong......surely the govt will apply immunity not have it lifted. Ass about! Of course editorially, this newspaper must have some incompetents to let this stuff pass by!
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ara simon veru bniedem bla misthija, ma jafx xamel vince farrugja kemm gidep u imanipula diskors fil qorti fil kas li kellu ma sandro, lil dan ja buffu ma taid xejn fuqu.
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HE WHO IS FREE FROM SIN , THROW THE FIRST STONE///// Please note Mr Busuttil
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Am I the only one who saw a certain Vincent Farrugia on the PN list? Two weights, two measures Dr Busuttil. I suggest you get your own house in order before you throw these infantile tantrums.
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What pathetic Simon is not saying is that Abela Baldacchino was nominated before any of the so called corruption came to the surface and again she has not been found guilty as yet, so has he ever heard of the phrase innocent till proven guilty?If we go by Simon rules a few of the PN ex ministers would be behind bars.
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hu pacenzja .ftakar li fadallek 4 snin u 10xhur fl oppozizjoni.
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OQBRA IMBAJDA! Claudette Abela Baldacchino contested the European Parliament elections in 2009 way before the inquiry was set up, which in fact involved more PN councillors than PL ones. The PL has no right to stop a previous candidate for MEP to submit her application for the by election and Simon Busuttil knows this too well. The fact that he is now criticising the PL shows what a double faced person he is and to what level his democratic credentials lie. Clearly He has not learnt the lesson of the might of the People who voted him and his cronies out with such massive force.
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Imma kif ma jisthux dawn in-nies. Hemm kaz bhal dak fuq Rita Schembri u OLAF u ma ghamlu xejn meta kienu fil-gvern, anzi, Dr. Gonzi li Rita Schembri hi persuna ta' intergrità. Kull persuna hija innocenti sakemm ma tinstabx hatja. PN dejjem mexa b'mizien differenti. Dak BLU u dak AHMAR. U hallina Dr. Busuttil, ghadek ma tghallimt xejn mill-ahhar elezzjoni.
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U fuq Vince Farrugia, Simon Busuttil ma jghid xejn? Hallih jitfa in-nomina.... ma giex bi skrupli u etika fuq VINCE FARRUGIA ;)