Wenzu Mintoff pledges honesty and impartiality in new role

Former Labour MP Wenzu Mintoff sworn in as judge • says he will work in his new role with 'honesty, impartiality, fairness and a sense of equality'

President of the Republic, Marie Louise Coleiro Preca, appointing Lawrence Mintoff as judge. Photo Ray Attard
President of the Republic, Marie Louise Coleiro Preca, appointing Lawrence Mintoff as judge. Photo Ray Attard
Lawrence Mintoff being appointed as Judge. Photo Ray Attard
Lawrence Mintoff being appointed as Judge. Photo Ray Attard
Wenzu Mintoff appointed as Judge • Video Ray Attard

Lawrence Mintoff was this morning sworn in as a judge by President Marie Louise Coleiro Preca, in the presence of Prime Minister Joseph Muscat, Justice Minister Owen Bonnici, the Chief Justice and the Attorny General, Peter Grech. Mintoff's family were also present.

The appointment was yesterday greeted with expected sceptism by the Opposition, whose deputy leader for party affairs Beppe Fenech Adami claimed that the former Labour MP lacked the necessary courtroom experience to join the Superior Courts as judge.

Mintoff, while expressing his gratitude to the Cabinet for his nomination, said that he would work in his new role "with honesty, impartiality, fairness and a sense of equality", factors he said were the benchmarks of the legal system.

Mintoff said that he was also aware of the responsibility that came with the role, explaining that the law courts saw "persons of flesh and blood" entering their halls, almost always under clouds of anxiety.

On her part, President Marie Louise Coleiro Preca said that members of the judiciary should always be impartial and independent, with these qualities being of utmost importance to any democratic system. 

She said that she has no doubt that Mintoff would be fit for the role and would carry out his duties with honour.

Prime Minister Joseph Muscat was asked by the press over Mintoff's strong political affiliation to the Labour party. Muscat said that if there was one criticism that could not be aimed at Mintoff "it's the accusation that he lacks integrity... politicians from both sides of the House have been appointed judges in the past and they have shown that they are capable of rising above politics."

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