Speaker of the House Anglu Farrugia has blocked Nationalist Party MPs on Parliament’s Standards Committee from calling its own witnesses in an investigation into an alleged ethics breach by Labour MP Rosianne Cutajar.
The committee will instead hear from Inland Revenue Commissioner Marvin Gaerty before deciding whether to call any other witnesses.
The investigations centres around an investigation by the Standards Commissioner into reports that Cutajar had received cash as payment for her role in brokering a property deal involving alleged Daphne Caruana Galizia mastermind Yorgen Fenech.
The investigation found that there was an ethics breach, however, the report has not yet been adopted by the committee. A vote was taken at the last sitting with both government MPs voting against and two Opposition MPs voting in favour.
The Speaker, using his casting vote, decided not to vote for the report to be adopted and to instead request further investigations.
In response, the Opposition MPs on the committee said they would be submitting a list of witnesses they would like to testify before the committee. The last sitting saw a long heated argument between MPs from both sides, with government MPs outright refusing to agree to call both Gaerty and Charles Farrugia it-Tikka.
Farrugia is an associate of Cutajar’s who has told the committee that he was the one that had received payment for the property and not Cutajar.
The sitting descended into chaos before the Speaker got up and left abruptly before a decision had been taken.
During today’s sitting, PN MP Karol Aquilina again proposed that both Gaerty and Farrugia be called to testify during the same sitting.
Government MPs again refused and proposed calling Gaerty to testify before deciding on any other witnesses. Farrugia backed the proposal this time around.
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