Photo: Adrian Delia and other PN MPs at last October’s Spinola vigil for Daphne Caruana Galizia
Nationalist Party leader Adrian Delia will attend this afternoon’s protest at Castille Square against corruption and in favour of justice for assassinated journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia, a PN spokesperson has confirmed.
The PN leader had heavily hinted that he will be there today – posting a photo on his Facebook page of the first demonstration in the wake of Caruana Galizia’s murder last October.
“We shall take this no longer,” Delia said. “We shall stand tall and march together. We shall persevere till the end, till the truth is told, till justice prevails. #Justice #EndImpunity.”
Delia specifically demanded answers on two deals conducted by the Labour government – its deal with ElectroGas for the provision of LNG and its original deal with Vitals Global Healthcare for the operation of three private hospitals.
“Muscat’s government purchased our gas through intermediaries to lose us €40 million into another secretive deal whilst money started pouring into a secret Dubai company – 17 Black,” Delia said in one post.
“Muscat’s government sold our hospitals to unknown foreigners and threw away €50 million into a deep wide hole,” he said in another.
Delia had attended the first vigil and protest in the wake of Caruana Galizia’s murder last October, but has since kept his distance after the late journalist’s family informed him he was not welcome at the events. He has since appeared heavily at odds with some of the PN MPs who often attend the protests, with things coming to a boil last week when eight MPs voted in favour of a domestic violence Bill despite Delia having come out strongly against it.
In the months preceding her murder, Caruana Galizia wrote extensively about Adrian Delia – including about his financial situation and about how he had allegedly laundered money from a Soho prostitution ring a decade ago. Delia responded by accusing Caruana Galizia of cooking up lies because she was afraid that she was losing her grip over the Nationalist Party. Since her murder, he has publicly challenged the police to investigate these stories.
Today’s protest, organised by activist groups OccupyJustice and Awturi, is being held as a response to The Daphne Project – a global journalistic collaboration which is investigating a massive trance of ElectroGas documents that had been leaked to Caruana Galizia in the months before her assassination. Her son Matthew Caruana Galizia has said the leaks would probably have been her mother’s biggest story.
The leaks include an email sent by Nexia BT to Mossack Fonseca, which enquires about setting up bank accounts in the Bahamas for the Panama companies of Tourism Minister Konrad Mizzi and the Prime Minister’s chief of staff Keith Schembri. Nexia BT said the companies will receive around €150,000 a month – primarily from two mysterious Dubai companies, including one called 17 Black. A FIAU report found that 17 Black had received at least €1.3 million from the Maltese agent of the tanker providing LNG to Electrogas and from an unnamed Azeri national.
“We are gravely concerned about recent developments,” OccupyJustice and Awturi said. “Firstly, it is very clear now that Minister Konrad Mizzi lied to the Maltese and European Parliaments, and that both he and the Prime Minister’s staff chief Keith Schembri lied to the people about their involvement in 17 Black. We now know, through documentary evidence, that they set up a structure to earn €150,000 a month in bribes. The Prime Minister has not dismissed them.”
“Secondly, international media report that it is likely that Maltese security services had been tapping into the phone communications of at least one of the alleged assassins of Daphne Caruana Galizia for some time before he killed her, and they did nothing to stop him. In spite of these reports, no investigation has been called. The Prime Minister leads the committee that oversees the security service and has not provided answers about what has really happened. This protest will call for action and ask for political responsibility, as well as serious and independent investigations into the horrific revelations we are hearing. We are inviting everyone, including institutions in the Maltese community – political parties, churches, unions and employers, societies and other organisations – to attend this gathering in a sincere demand for Justice and Truth.”
The protest will start at 4pm and will be addressed by PN MEP David Casa, PD MP Godfrey Farrugia, youth activists Emma Portelli Bonnici and Alex Hili and OccupyJustice activist Rachel Williams. Egrant whistleblower Maria Efimova will also deliver a televised message from Greece.