The Nationalist Party’s Ethics Commission has unanimously decided that MP Jason Azzopardi’s acceptance of a three-night paid stay at the Hilton in Tel Aviv constitutes a breach of the code of ethics.
In a statement, the commission advised the PN’s Council to proceed by issuing a warning or to reprimand Azzopardi.
Azzopardi, the PN MP and parte civil lawyer in the Daphne Caruana Galizia murder case has confirmed that he did spend five days at the Israeli hotel, paid for by Tumas Group, the company owned by the assassination’s main suspect, Yorgen Fenech.
However, he dismissed any wrongdoing, explaining it was paid for without his foreknowledge and insisted that claims form part of criminal web attempting to stop his work.
The commission heard how Azzopardi paid for “extras” and bought a silver gift for Fenech to make it clear that he had no obligation towards him.
Azzopardi said he had called Ray Fenech, Yorgen Fenech’s uncle, to ask whether he could help out in finding him a hotel in the Israeli capital.
According to the party’s ethics rules, the acceptance of gifts is strictly prohibited.
“Particularly in an environment where there is a pressing and urgent need to clean up politics and in order to re-establish trust in the political class, it is imperative that there be coherence between politicians’ words and actions,” the commission said in a statement.
In a Facebook statement, Azzopardi, who had suspended himself from the party, said he accepted the commission’s decision.
Tag someone who needs to know this