The Malta Independent 28 June 2022, Tuesday

MPs argue over public official allegedly attending house visits in first PQ session in Parliament

Monday, 16 May 2022, 17:51 Last update: about 2 months ago

Minister for Social Justice and Solidarity, the Family and Children's Rights Michael Falzon criticized PN MP Claudette Buttigieg over a question she asked about a minister's partner, despite her never mentioning the names of said minister or his partner.

The argument happened during the very first parliamentary question session of this legislature, in a question put forth by Buttigieg.

Buttigieg asked if a person, whose details were enclosed in a separate document, had taken a leave from work to be able to attend home visits or directly participate in a minister's electoral campaign.

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She continued and asked whether if this was the case, the minister considered it appropriate that a person who occupied a sensitive position as director of services to vulnerable children and families be taking part in partisan political events which could undermine clients' confidence of the services.

Falzon replied that the person referred to in the parliamentary question had always gone about her duties diligently, despite being a minister's partner. He added that she had never acted in a way that compromised her duties.

Falzon said that the PN was resorting once again to personal attacks, this time in lieu of a partner of a minister.

Buttigieg said that she had never referred to the person in question as the minister's partner, and Falzon is the one who revealed this through his answer.

The family minister said that it was obvious who Buttigieg was referring to.

The person in question was the head of a public service directorate, it was said.

PN MP Karol Aquilina said that the code of ethics of the public service said in clause 21 that civil servants had to be politically impartial both in their duties as well as in their public life and questioned whether this clause was breached. Falzon said that he had no further comments to make.


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