Antonio Tajani, the former president of the European Parliament, and a group of Italian EPP MEPs have submitted a question to the commission asking for assurance that Yorgen Fenech “will not benefit from any EU resources”.
Yorgen Fenech, a processo per l’omicidio di #DaphneCaruanaGalizia, potrebbe ricevere risorse Ue per finanziare un gasdotto che fornisce gas alla centrale elettrica di cui è azionista e sulla quale Daphne stava indagando. La @EU_Commission faccia chiarezzahttps://t.co/GUDI4qepxw
— Antonio Tajani (@Antonio_Tajani) January 4, 2022
The worry stems from concerns that EU funds could be allocated towards the Electrogas project, which involves the construction of a pipeline from Sicily to Malta, more specifically, to the power plant of which Fenech is a shareholder.
Daphne Caruana Galizia, the journalist, and anti-corruption activist was investigating the same power plant prior to her murder on 16th October 2017, of which Fenech is the main suspect.
EU ministers recently agreed to allow Malta to apply for at least half of the funding a 400 million euro gas pipeline investment to Sicily.
According to a clause in the funding, projects linked to cases of fraud, corruption, or criminality, should not be eligible for financial assistance.
However, the Caruana Galizia family had previously warned that the pipeline would trigger a €100 million pay-out to Electrogas.
Together the MEPs asked the Commission:
“What actions does the Commission intend to take to ensure that European funding will not be awarded to persons directly or indirectly linked to the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia?”
“In the words of Matthew Caruana Galizia, the journalist’s son, this is simply ‘intolerable’. The European Union has, in fact, repeatedly praised the Daphne Caruana Galicia, even instituting a prize for journalism in her name,” the MEPs said.
Matthew Caruana Galizia and a small group of people were responsible for including a clause that blocked EU funding for the gas pipeline from reaching projects linked to criminality. The clause did not mention Electrogas directly. It was, rather, it was alluded to.
This article is part of a content series called Ewropej. This is a multi-newsroom initiative part-funded by the European Parliament to bring the work of the EP closer to the citizens of Malta and keep them informed about matters that affect their daily lives. This article reflects only the author’s view. The European Parliament is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.
What further actions could the commission take to ensure this risk is controlled?