[WATCH] Simon Busuttil raises spectre of government involvement in Daphne's murder, cites international media

On Xtra tonight, Simon Busuttil expresses grave concern at the possibility of a link between the government and Daphne Caruana Galizia's murder • Political commentators Frank Psaila and Manuel Micallef discuss the Daphne Projects allegations

Political commentators Frank Psaila and Manuel Micallef discuss the Daphne Project allegations on Xtra
Political commentators Frank Psaila and Manuel Micallef discuss the Daphne Project allegations on Xtra

There is a possibility of a link between the government and the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia, former Nationalist Party leader Simon Busuttil told Saviour Balzan.

But when pressed about his comment, Busuttil said he is merely quoting international media reports.

Reacting to the statements on Xtra on Thursday, opinionist Manuel Micallef said that it is “irresponsible” to suggest that there was a political mandate behind the murder, as the law needs to be allowed to “take its course”.

Micallef went on to add that even if a consortium of journalists are saying this, one must ask who their source is, and what the evidence is.

“You can’t blame everything that goes wrong on the country on the prime minister,” Micallef said, adding that some people “cannot stand” that Prime Minister Joseph Muscat is “the best prime minister”.

When asked by Balzan whether he thinks that the international media is being too speculative or sensationalist, Busuttil said that “this is what happens in a normal democracy” and that the “media attacks” in order to arrive to the truth.

Busuttil is charismatic but inconsistent, Micallef said, referring particularly to the way Busuttil spoke about Economy Minister Chris Cardona. “[For Busuttil] everyone is innocent until proven guilty, except for Cardona,” Micallef said, criticising the manner in which Busuttil is dodging responsibility for his statements by saying that the allegations are made by the media, and not him personally.

Busuttil clarified that he is not pointing fingers or saying that someone is guilty or not. “I just want an investigation to take place,” and “for the prime minister to shoulder political responsibility,” he said.

Political responsibility and legal responsibility are separate, however, and taking political responsibility should not depend on whether one is found guilty or not, Busuttil said. He went on to explain that political action, such as resignations, should happen as soon as there are doubts or suspicions – until the politicians’ names are cleared.

Asked by Balzan why Nationalist Party leader Adrian Delia is less aggressive than Busuttil on the way he speaks about the Daphne Project allegations, political commentator Frank Psaila disagreed.

“Corruption is a priority which Delia is always speaking about,” Psaila said. “He is speaking with the benefit of hindsight that corruption has an impact on people.”

People will always speak about bread and butter issues foremost, Psaila said, but this doesn’t mean that they are not worried about corruption and the “scandalous” issues being addressed by the Daphne Project.

These issues should be addressed, Micallef said, but added that the people have “had enough” of “recycled stories” which are mere allegations – to which Psaila insisted that the recent stories from the Project provided new evidence.

Read more from Simon Busuttil’s interview on the Sunday edition of MaltaToday.