Yesterday’s anti-corruption protest in Valletta was given prominence in The Guardian this morning, with a photo of it featured right on its front page under the caption ‘Malta rallies against state corruption’.
The protest was also featured on popular French newspaper Le Monde, with the title: “Thousands of protestors demand truth and justice for Daphne Caruana Galizia’s assassination”.
The Guardian is one of 18 news organisations involved in the Daphne Project – an international journalistic consortium investigating a massive tranche of files from ElectroGas that were leaked to journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia months before her assassination.
In fact, yesterday’s protest was held as a reaction to the first batch of stories that have been published by the Daphne Project – such as how the ElectroGas deal is seeing Maltese consumers pay double the market rate for LNG as a result of a crash in oil prices since the deal was signed. Energy experts have also questioned why ElectroGas is purchasing LNG from a middleman – Azeri state-owned Socar – instead of directly from source. Socar is acquiring LNG from Shell and selling it off to ElectroGas at an estimated $40 million annual profit.
During yesterday’s protest, Occupy Justice activist Rachel Williams strongly suggested part of this $40 million is secretly filtering into politicians’ pockets.
“No wonder the Prime Minister offered a €1 million reward to anyone who comes forward with information on the masterminds behind Daphne Caruana Galizia’s murder,” Williams said. “What’s €1 million compared to $40 million that we gave to your friends?”
Protest organisers have estimated that around 6,000 people attended yesterday’s demonstration, exceeding their expectations by far.