Moviment Graffitti has warned that the state can never prevent criminal acts from taking place while criminals are funding Malta’s political parties.
In its submission to the Daphne Caruana Galizia public inquiry, the group stressed that intricate links between successive governments and Malta’s business class have led to widespread impunity.
“We are all collateral damage as long as the relationship between political parties and the business class remains tight-knit,” Moviment Graffitti said.
“This is shown by Malta’s history of cheap land grabs and the unregulated construction industry that has proved fatal to construction workers and residents alike. Corruption found its roots in the Nationalist administration and flourished under the Labour government. Party financing led to backroom deals and cheap land grabs,” it added.
Moviment Graffitti added that at no point in post-independence Malta did the state have any effective criminal law provisions in place to avoid the development of a de facto state of impunity.
“In Malta, money talks,” a spokesperson said. “No state in Malta can guarantee prevention against a state of impunity if they are indebted to private corporate interests.”
“Daphne Caruana Galizia and Miriam Pace’s murders took place because of these close ties, the group said.
White-collar crime is rife in Malta, the activists continued, and is now central to a de-facto state of impunity.
“Reports that a Chinese energy negotiator was behind a company intended to send millions to former OPM chief of staff Keith Schembri and former Minister Konrad Mizzi continue to show how those in power use public funds to deepen their pockets,” it added.
This comes after Prime Minister Robert Abela declared that the level of organised crime in Malta was practically non-existent.
In an interview yesterday, Abela refused to dwell too much on the “mistakes” made by his predecessor Joseph Muscat, emphasising that he was now looking to the future.
Asked whether one such lesson was that anyone involved in business shouldn’t be in politics, Abela responded by saying that he had chosen Clyde Caruana, and later Glenn Micallef, to be his head of secretariat, avoiding the term chief of staff.
“Politicians should do politics and businessmen should be business,” he said, adding however that he would not get behind the demonisation of the business community.
He sought to reassure business owners that the reforms being implemented with a view to the country avoiding grey-listing by the FATF, would not turn into a witch hunt against businesses.
What do you make of Graffitti’s statement?