Malta’s Eurovision spending will be probed from next week amid allegations that the island over-spent on improving Destiny’s chances, including by making bets to increase the odds.
The island’s Eurovision hopeful was top of the polls for weeks, becoming a hot contender to win only to place 7th after failing to get a substantial amount of public votes.
Minister within OPM Carmelo Abela told Lovin Malta that he requested an audit.
Times of Malta reported that the audit will begin on Monday and was triggered by claims of financial mismanagement that were flagged to Abela by the board of national broadcaster PBS.
Sources told the newspaper there had already been an informal admission from insiders that part of the budget was spent on financing foreign bets on Destiny to win the competition.
Other sources told Lovin Malta that the probe was likely to be part of a wider investigation into the spending by Malta Tourism Authority which itself spent around €350,000 on promoting Malta’s Eurovision entry.
Destiny’s Je Me Casse was the highest-scoring song in the semi-finals and placed third in the jury votes on the final night, but only garnered 47 points from the public, compared to 318 which the winning Italian song earned.
Last week, former Eurovision participant Ludwig Galea raised his own concerns about Malta’s Eurovision strategy, saying that a similar upset occurred when Ira Losco took part in the festival back in 2018, when her odds were also very high.
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