Opposition Leader Simon Busuttil has reacted to a press release issued by the Labour Party which said he should apologise for what it said was an "attack" he launched yesterday on Attorney General Peter Grech.
Speaking with The Malta Independent, Dr Busuttil said:
“They are basically saying that I attacked Dr Peter Grech, which is completely false. I did not mention him in my speech yesterday, I spoke of my criticism of the fact that Prime Minister Muscat instituted a court case effectively against himself. The Labour Party are trying to spin this because along with Dr Muscat opening the case with the advice of the Attorney General, it supposedly means I criticised him. First they create a lie, and then they attack you for having supposedly said it.”
Asked about a claim made that Dr Busuttil had called all PL followers ‘mafiosi,” he said: “this is another complete lie, from start to finish. Again, first they put words in your mouth, and then attack you for having supposedly said it. This shows the panic when you resort to this kind of spinning.”
In a tweet Dr Busuttil insisted that the "attack" claim was a lie invented by the PL.
He said the party had first invented a lie and then issued a press release about it.
The PL press release echoed a similar statement made by the government yesterday, following Busuttil's speech during a political event. The Opposition Leader claimed yesterday that the court case launched against Marco Gaffarena was “designed to be lost.”
The PL said a “hysterical” Dr Busuttil had resorted to attacking AG Peter Fenech, who holds a constitutional role.
It said the Opposition Leader spoke a great deal about standards and behaviour but had no shame in claiming that the court case filed by the PM and the AG was designed to be lost. It said his speech was symptomatic of a negative Opposition Leader who had no respect towards the institutions. This style of politics, the PL said, did no honour to people (such as the AG) who have enjoyed public trust due to the nature of their work. “The Opposition Leader should at the very least apologise to the AG and the courts,” the PL said.
In a similar incident last week which was not mentioned by the PL, former Parliamentary Secretary Michael Falzon said parts of the Auditor General’s report on the Gaffarena expropriation deal “resembled a speech by the Opposition Leader.”
Questions sent to Deputy leader of the Labour party have not yet been answered at the time of writing.