Labour backbencher Jean Claude Micallef has welcomed the Standards Commissioner’s report on Facebook misuse by Cabinet ministers because it “establishes a routine on how Cabinet members use their official social media pages”.
He also reiterated his call for MPs to be supported by human and financial resources to cover parliamentary work and PR in terms of their constituency.
“In that manner one will guarantee better efficiency and reduce the discrepancies between an MP and a Cabinet Minister in terms of exposure and parliamentary works,” he told Lovin Malta.
“It is of public interest to know what projects are being carried forward by the said ministers but one must definitely distinguish between government propaganda and personal publicity,” said Micallef.
“For the first time ever this administration has committed itself to create such a framework and I’m all in favour to enhance its practicability.”
He said ministers should stick to the Code of Ethics as outlined by the Principle Permanent Secretary so as “not to create a double jeopardy”.
According to the Standards Commissioner, who found “widespread misuse of public resources” among Cabinet members, the government has accepted to change the practice of blurring the lines between official ministry Facebook pages and personal pages of ministers.
Deputy Prime Minister Chris Fearne was the first of the offending ministers to set up an official ministry page for the Health Ministry, while Economy Minister Silvio Schembri has also set one up for the Economy Ministry.