Alternattiva Demokratika: Muscat defending the indefensible

The green party insisted that the Prime Minister retaining Konrad Mizzi and Keith Schembri shows the electorate had been taken for a ride when it was told that government had learnt from past mistakes 

AD chairperson Arnold Cassola
AD chairperson Arnold Cassola

Prime Minister Joseph Muscat was trying to defend the indefensible during his grilling by the European Parliament earlier today, according to Alternattiva Demokratika.

“Whatever the Prime Minister says, the fact remains that he did not take the necessary steps when they were required on the case of Panama Papers,” said AD chairperson Arnold Cassola, who added that not only had the Muscat not taken action, but had also rewarded Konrad Mizzi with a ministerial position following his re-election, while also keeping Keith Schembri as his chief of staff.  

Cassola insisted that it was “scandalous” that both Mizzi and Schembri had retained their posts, in light of the allegations of the past months. Moreover, he criticised the Prime Minister for his decision to include the country’s Financial Services sector in the Office of the Prime Minister’s portfolio.

He insisted that this went against ethical practices, especially when it was a “known fact” that there was a person in Castille who, in addition to owning a Panamanian company, was facing allegations of grave abuses of the financial system.

“To add insult to injury, the Prime Minister asks that when facing foreigners, everyone should defend the country, or better still, defend the lack of ethics on the part of those closest to him,” he said, adding that his simply constituted “fake patriotism”.

He stressed that AD would not be complicit by not speaking out as this would mean justifying unethical decisions taken by Muscat’s government.

“Alternattiva Demokratika will keep insisting that what has taken place is unacceptable in a democratic society where the law must be respected,” he continued.

“The Labour Party’s convincing win can’t serve as absolution for the mistakes made. The Prime Minister convinced the electorate that it was prepared to learn from the mistakes it had made. The decisions taken this week, give the impression that the Prime Minister took the electorate for a ride because he is repeating the same mistakes only a few days after his re-election.”