Malta, new Cabinet sworn in

LA VALLETTA (MALTA) (ITALPRESS/MNA) – Maltese Prime Minister Robert Abela has unveiled his new Cabinet few hours before the swearing in of the new ministers and parliamentary secretaries on Wednesday afternoon.

The official list consisting of 18 ministers and 4 parliamentary secretaries – a total of 22 members in the Cabinet excluding Prime Minister Abela – was published before the ministers took their oath in office during a ceremony presided by the President of Malta George Vella at the Presidential Palace in Valletta.

A number of Ministers have retained their portfolio, and others have been given new responsibilities. The new Cabinet includes six new politicians, all elected for the first time in last Saturday’s election. Four of these have been appointed Parliamentary Secretaries with responsibility for various sectors, including Social Dialogue, Local Councils, European Funds and Youths, Research and Innovation. The three women elected on behalf of the Labour Party in Saturday’s election have all been included in the Cabinet.

The Office of the Prime Minister said in a statement that as promised during the electoral campaign, Prime Minister Robert Abela has selected a Cabinet that includes a mix of experience and new blood. It adds that the main aim of this Cabinet is to implement the electoral manifesto on which the Government was elected, an electoral manifesto based on the need for a better Malta, equal opportunities for everyone and a better quality of life.

Prime Minister Robert Abela said in a statement that he will consider other appointments, in light of the need to boost feminine representation within the executive, just as it is being boosted in Parliament.

Former Justice Minister Edward Zammit Lewis and former Broadcasting Minister Carmelo Abela have been left out of the new Cabinet. Both Ministers found themselves at the centre of seperate controversies during the previous legislature. Zammit Lewis is widely considered as a close friend of Maltese businessman Yorgen Fenech, accused as the mastermind behind the assassination of Maltese journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia. Meanwhile, former Minister Abela was implicated by the Nationalist Opposition with his involvement in the notorious attempted hesit of HSBC’s headquarters in 2010. Carmelo Abela denies having any accusation related to the HSBC heist.

Source: medNews