Maurice Mizzi’s anti-Muslim tirade: The Chevalier disassociates himself from the Guardian

After being called in for an urgent meeting with the Environment Minister, Maurice Mizzi issues statement saying his comments on migrants did not reflect position of Guardian of the Future Generations and insists he has never made any distinction with respect to race

Maurice Mizzi has insisted he never made any distinction according to race throughout his life
Maurice Mizzi has insisted he never made any distinction according to race throughout his life

Chevalier Maurice Mizzi has insisted that comments he passed in relation to Muslim migrants were made in his own capacity, and were not a reflection of the position of Guardian of the Future Generations, which he himself holds.

Mizzi issued a statement on Wednesday, following an urgent meeting requested the day prior by Environment Minister José Herrera, over an anti-Muslim tirade he went on during an interview with Times of Malta.

The prominent business acknowledged that his personal statements “may have been perceived or interpreted as potentially insensitive directly or indirectly to certain individuals of the community.”

However, he said that his “true arguments and views were made in the broader context of the right for every person to have a high degree of well-being”, and he added that he has never in his life discriminated according to race or religion in the support he has given to the NGO Spiru Mizzi Foundation.

Mizzi, appointed ‘Guardian of the Future Generations’ after the resignation departure of climate change expert Michael Zammit Cutajar, had hit out in his interview at irregular immigration into Malta, arguing that Muslims were “taking over” and insisting the country should stop migrants from entering.

Read also: Minister calls urgent meeting with Mizzi over ‘Muslim invasion’ interview

“We should stop these people coming from abroad without a passport, with their children and with a different religion… We are living in a Catholic country, and when I die, I want to die in a Catholic country. At the moment, there are so many Muslims coming – they’re all having nine babies, next to our two – and they will take over eventually,” Mizzi had said in the interview published on Sunday.

“I want to have Malta for the Maltese,” he said. “Maybe that’s an antiquated view, but I want to see it Catholic and for the Maltese. I don’t mind having others, as long as they don’t take over. And the problem is they have so many children.”

But in his statement today, Mizzi appeared to draw a distinction between his personal opinion and the opinion of the Guardian of the Future Generations - a board composed of four members, of which he is the chairperson.

He also said the immigration topic formed only a small portion of his interview, in which he delved into other matters such as infrastructure and social housing in Malta.

"The comments relating to migration made to the journalist were in Chev. Maurice Mizzi’s own personal capacity and do not reflect the position of the Guardian of the Future Generations," his statement read. 

“It is to be noted that the interview included a number of aspects way beyond the focus of certain remarks. While immigration as a subject was discussed, it was only a small part and Chev. Mizzi delved into other subjects such as infrastructure and social housing,” it said.

“Chev. Maurice Mizzi has always been at the forefront in supporting families and children coming from all walks of life including various nationalities and ethnic origins. Throughout his life, Chev. Mizzi has provided support, through the Spiru Mizzi Foundation without any sort of distinction with respect to race, religion or ethnicity,” the statement added.

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