The Malta Independent 16 October 2019, Wednesday

Passport scandal proof of most corrupt government in country’s history – PN

Monday, 23 September 2019, 17:44 Last update: about 23 days ago

The passport sale scandal that was revealed by international media outlets is a confirmation that this government is the most corrupt Government in the history of the country, the Nationalist Party said in a press statement.

One of Chetcuti Cauchi law firm was caught boasting of his friendly relations with both the Prime Minister and the parliamentary secretary for citizenship.

The Chetcuti Cauchi law firm was one of the first agents to be granted authorisation to sell Maltese citizenship.

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The comments were made to a journalist from French TV channel M6, who was posing as a representative of African clients seeking a Maltese passport.

In its press statement, the PN said that the Government’s decision to suspend the firm’s license is “too little too late”, and the damage to the country's reputation had been done.

It called called for the suspension of the IIP scheme immediately and that an inquiry is opened to investigate all the passport sales which had passed through the aforementioned firm.

“PN has from the beginning warned that the IIP scheme will give a bad name to our country and ruin the good reputation it garnered after a long number of years.

“This all shows how the decision made by the Labour Government to sell the Maltese citizenship is putting thousands of jobs that depend of the good reputation of the country at risk, including those in the financial services sector.”

It pointed out that it was after the Nationlist Party’s request in April 2017 that a magisterial inquiry had investigated accusations made in an FIAU report that the Prime Minister’s Chief of Staff Keith Schembri had taken €100,000 in kickbacks from the sale of three Maltese passports to three Russians.

“After more than two years this inquiry is sstill ongoing and it is still unknown when it will be published.”

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