Former Prime Minister Joseph Muscat did not breach MPs’ code of ethics when he traveled to Italy with his family for a holiday paid for by third parties, a Standards Commissioner investigation has found.
Election candidate Arnold Cassola had filed a complaint with the commissioner back in August 2020 in which he alleged that Muscat’s holiday had been funded by businessman Pietro Catalfamo.
In a statement yesterday, the Office of the Standards Commissioner George Hzyler said it had concluded that the Muscat’s had been invited on the holiday by Diane Izzo, a family friend.
According to Hyzler’s investigation, Izzo had secured the stay at the Castello di Collalto Sabino through an agreement with Catalfamo, who owns it.
The commissioner noted that the code of ethics for members of Parliament did not permit MPs to accept gifts from persons or entities with an interest in legislation before Parliament.
There was no law that impacted Izzo’s personal or commercial interests, Hyzler said, therefore there was no obligation for Muscat to refuse the holiday.
Hyzler noted however that the manner in which the code of ethics regulated gifts given to MPs was “too limited”, and called for the code to be updated to ensure better transparency.
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