Government rejects request for ministerial statement on murder allegations

Nationalist Opposition walks out of Parliament after government turns down request for ministerial statement on allegation economy minister met Caruana Galizia murder suspect

Opposition leader Adrian Delia
Opposition leader Adrian Delia

The government this evening denied a request by leader of the Opposition Adrian Delia for a ministerial statement on the revelations issued today by the international media regarding the circumstances surrounding Daphne Caruana Galizia’s murder and its aftermath.

The request was denied by government MP Byron Camilleri, who, speaking in the Prime Minister’s absence, said that since Delia had not asked for the statement using his right under any specific article of Parliament’s standing orders, the such a request could not be upheld.

Delia asked if the Prime Minister was going to make a statement to say how long he had known that one of his ministers - a reference to economy minister Chris Cardona, who according to information published by Times of Malta had been seen with one of the accused at a Siggiewi bar prior to his arrest - had met one of the persons accused of murdering Caruana Galizia.

“Will [the Prime Minister] explain how he met with that person after the murder [of Daphne Caruana Galizia]?” Delia said, “Will the Prime Minister say in a ministerial statement how democracy in our country is being silenced, in what way and by whom? Is there the will to answer the questions everyone wants replies to?”

Commotion erupted from the Oppostion benches after Deputy Speaker and Nationalist MP Claudette Buttigieg informed Delia that she couldn’t oblige anyone to issue a ministerial statement. The Opposition then walked out of Parliament.

 

The Opposition’s reaction comes in the light of a number of new pieces of information, which have started being published this afternoon by the Daphne Project, a team of 45 journalists from 18 news organisations who pored over up to 750,000 files and official documents connected to Caruana Galizia’s work.

Nationalist Party statement

In a statement, the Nationalist Party said the report of a witness having seen Cardona in the company of murder suspect Alfred Degiorgio was “a very serious one” that merited a serious investigation and replies.

“We are demanding an immediate, serious investigation that is independent and credible without no political involvement. These serious allegations cannot be allowed to pass as if nothing happens. The people deserve to know the truth about these allegations.”

The PN said the government had to ensure Malta’s reputation no longer suffers “by the actions and opacity of the government and an attitude of impunity. The eyes of the world are upon us.

“At this point, Joseph Muscat must take the decisions to safeguard our country’s reputation.”

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