The Malta Independent 16 October 2019, Wednesday

Police failure register FIAU reports shows PN needs to keep fighting for justice - Busuttil

Sunday, 16 July 2017, 10:49 Last update: about 3 years ago

The failure from the side of the police to register reports regarding suspicions of money laundering involving Keith Schembri, shows that the PN needs to keep fighting for the law, Nationalist Party Leader Simon Busuttil said this morning.

Speaking in a live phone interview on Radio 101 this morning, Busuttil was referring to an interview with ex-FIAU official Jonathan Ferris, published today in The Sunday Times. In the interview, Ferris, who was recently sacked from the anti-money-laundering agency without warning, said that the reports on Keith Schembri were not registered by the police.

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In a statement sent in the afternoon the police force denied the allegations made by former inspector Jonathan Ferris and said the files had been registered like what happens in similar cases. The statement said the force had always acted with integrity and correctness and it was shameful for people to cast doubts, including with facts that did not exist. 

"Interviews like these show that the Nationalist Party needs to be fighting for the law," said Busuttil. "More and more, there needs to be somebody fighting for justice in this country. Even if I'm not leader, I will be fighting for justice as a private citizen, as there are a lot of shocking things happening which won't just stop here."

"Ferris was thrown aside not because he did not know how to do his work, but rather, because he did his work well, because he was competent," he said. Busuttil added that he was mostly shocked by Ferris' description that his termination is a 'badge of honour' for "doing his job well".

Earlier, when asked by the hosts why he called for the opening of a magesterial inquiry into the Panama companies linked with Keith Schembri and Konrad Mizzi last week,  Busuttil said "we need to fight for justice, if we do not, it will be discarded."

He described the Nationalist Party as a ;shield' in the fight for justice. "Law does not mean anything to this current Government," he said. "They apply it whenever they want, but don't when it suits them." "They do the most grevious this then it's like nothing happened and you cannot take steps against them."

Earlier on in the interview, Busuttil explained the procedure regarding the election for the new Nationalist Party Leader which will begin tomorrow. "This is an important week for the Party, the start of a new chapter," he said. So far, three people have stated that they will apply for the position.

In the first weekend of September, the General Council, made up of approximately 1500 members will select two final candidates to "make the choice more focused," Busuttil said. On the 16th of September, the Party members (tesserati) will vote for the final candidate. "About 20,000 members, will be taking the vote. This will show that we are a true people's party," Busuttil said, "with a leader elected by those who love the party."

He said that he would like to make it clear that he is not recontesting  as he feels he needs to bow his head and respect it, following the electoral result. He said that he will still be contributing within the Party. 

 

PL statement

Reacting, the Labour Party said that while he would not be contesting the leadership election, Busuttil wanted his successor to be just as negative.

“Simon Busuttil made it clear that this process should attract people that keep fighting. He even said that he would keep on fighting even as a private citizen. He has still not understood that politics are not about fighting and that his negative and aggressive style has already been shunned by the electorate.”

The country, it said, deserved a serious and constructive Opposition with ideas for families and businesses.

 

 


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