Malta, uproar in Parliament and protests against the Labour government
LA VALLETTA (MALTA) (ITALPRESS/MNA) – Uproar in the Maltese Parliament and protests in the streets of the capital city Valletta on Thursday night, as the Opposition MPs walked out of Parliament in a sign of protest.
The Opposition led by the Nationalist leader Bernard Grech left the Parliament building after the Labour government presented at the very last moment and without any notice amendments which effectively nullified the Opposition request, asking the Labour government to recoup around 400 million euros granted to Vitals Global Healthcare and Steward Healthcare in a concession to administer three state hospitals.
Just before the parliamentary session started, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Health Chris Fearne confirmed that Steward will “abandon” the managing of the hospitals with immediate effect.
The Opposition Leader accused the Speaker of the Maltese Parliament of irregularity and of “failing in his duties towards the Maltese people” after he allowed the government amendments to be presented, even though the government had no more allocated time. “This side of the Parliament does not intend to participate in today’s vote, given that you have turned it into a parody of democracy,” the Leader of the Opposition said, before he led his party’s MPs into a walkout. As the Nationalists MPs walked out of the Parliament building, they threw up in the air a number of fake cheques of 400 million in public funds given to Steward Health Care on behalf of former Labour Prime Minister Joseph Muscat and Labour Prime Minister Robert Abela.
While addressing hundreds of protestors outside the Parliament building, the Leader of the Opposition said that Prime Minister Robert Abela chose to defend the interests of himself and the fraudsters – a reference to Steward and Vitals – instead of the interests of the Maltese people. In a statement, the Nationalist Party declared that what had happened in Parliament confirmed that in the case of the sale of public hospitals to Vitals and Steward, Prime Minister Robert Abela is an accomplice with both companies in fraud, theft and bribery.
The PN leader said that the Prime Minister should be ashamed to mention Daphne Caruana Galizia, after she was killed during the time of the Labour Party in government. He also asked what action the Police Commissioner and the Attorney General are taking.
Following the protest by the Nationalist Opposition, the civil society organisation Repubblika held a vigil in honour of assassinated journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia.
Repubblika accused the Attorney General and the Police Commissioner of working against the interest of justice and protecting the criminals behind Pilatus Bank.
Daphne Caruana Galizia was the first journalist to accuse Pilatus Bank of being involved in corruption and money laundering.
– foto Department of Information Malta –