Civil society group Repubblika has disassociated itself from a banner with the word mafia that was left outside the Times of Malta offices last night.
A photo of the banner, reading Times of Mafia and written with the exact same typography as the paper’s logo, has been doing the rounds this morning on social media.
In recent years, Repubblika has carried out similar actions and left a banners in various locations as part of it’s campaign for justice for Daphne Caruana Galizia.
“We didn’t do this. When we call out the mafia we apply the term to the criminals, not their victims. It’s truly vile of people who continue to deny that Keith Schembri is a tentacle in the mafia that still gripos ou government, to be now accusing one of Keith Schembri’s victims,” Repubblika said in a Facebook post.
The Times of Malta has found itself at the centre of controversy after two former managing directors of Allied Newspapers – the company that owns the Times of Malta – were implicated in corruption involving the purchase of new printing press equipment for the Times back in 2011.
One of its former managing directors, Vince Buhagiar, was charged in court on Saturday, while a second, Adrian Hillman is believed to be in the UK and is expected back in Malta to face similar charges.
In an editorial this week, the Times said that its editors had complete independence from the company’s management who they were “not beholden” to.
“Editors have also not seen the conclusions of a magisterial inquiry into the Hillman-Schembri case and know little about the company’s involvement in those proceedings apart from what has been reported so far,” read the editorial.
Despite this, the newspaper has been on the receiving end of substantial criticism, including from many on the Labour side of the political divide, who have used the latest developments to try and discredit the paper’s work.
What do you make of this?