Tony Zarb, the former General Workers’ Union secretary-general and current consultant to tourism minister Konrad Mizzi, has stirred up controversy by implying that the group of women who protested at Castille last night were prostitutes.
“These people went to the wrong place. Instead of going to Castille, they should have gone to Strait Strait back in the 1960s where they would have found many people ready to warm them up,” Zarb said on Facebook. “These are a bunch of traitors who form part of a company of assassins who are ready to do anything it takes to get into power. If they get cold out there, I’m sure they’ll find someone who is ready to warm them up.”
The protesters are calling on the Prime Minister to sack police commissioner Laurence Cutajar and Attorney General Peter Grech in the wake of the assassination of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia.
Nationalist MEP Roberta Metsola tweeted Zarb’s Facebook status, making sure to point out that the minister he currently advises had been implicated in the Panama Papers scandal.
— Roberta Metsola MEP (@RobertaMetsola) October 26, 2017
Journalist James Debono lambasted Zarb’s statement as an “unacceptable sexist comment by someone who carries weight and responsibility”.
“Where is the most feminist government in Maltese history?” he questioned.
PN Msida councillor Alan Abela-Wadge was more straight to the point, calling Zarb a “sexist prick”.
Blogger Manuel Delia, who forms part of the Civil Society Network which organised the protest, lambasted Zarb as a “misogynist bigot” and “supposed socialist”.
However, Zarb stood firm in the face of the backlash, hitting out at his critics as “hypocrites who only cry out in favour of freedom of expression when it suits them”.