The Malta Independent 19 April 2024, Friday
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Sofia inquiry: 72 hours and no political resignations yet, PN says

Saturday, 2 March 2024, 14:35 Last update: about 3 months ago

The Nationalist Party said Saturday that after more than 72 hours since the publication of the Sofia public inquiry report, “still no one has taken political responsibility.”

The Opposition party said that over three days have passed since the published report found the Government guilty of “serious deficiencies” – something which it should admit responsibility for, according to PN. Since the publication of the report, “neither Robert Abela nor the responsible Ministers have borne any responsibility for their shortcomings,” the PN said.

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As was stated in Parliament by PN leader Bernard Grech earlier this week, the PN is demanding that four notable political figures resign in the wake of the findings that have emerged from the Sofia public inquiry. Namely, these are the Prime Minister Robert Abela, Lands Minister Stefan Zrinzo Azzopardi (who was formerly the Minister for Public Works and Planning), Environment Minister Miriam Dalli, and the Minister for Economy, Enterprise and Strategic Projects, Silvio Schembri.

During his parliamentary speech, Grech said that now was no longer time for apologies, “it’s the time for action and responsibility.” Grech argued that such is the case because, according to the report, Jean Paul Sofia’s death could have been avoided if action had been taken prior. He demanded that someone shoulders responsibility, not just for the death of Jean Paul Sofia, but also for the death of Miriam Pace, and the lack of action taken in 2019 after three buildings collapsed within a span of three months.

Furthermore, PN continues to criticize the governing party for controversially voting against having a public inquiry to investigate the case of Sofia. During Wednesday’s plenary session in parliament, Grech referred to Abela as “the biggest actor to make sure that the truth doesn’t come out.”

The party has also been critical of the Ministers it deems responsible for Sofia’s death and the state of the building and construction industry across the Maltese islands. During a PN press conference on Thursday morning, PN MPs called for political responsibility to be carried after the public inquiry report found the State and the government guilty, while insisting for radical change in the sector of occupational health and safety; they had stated that this was necessary “after different Ministries ignored this sector.”

The Nationalist Party stated that the government is acting contrarily to what is being demanded from them.

“On the contrary, Robert Abela is trying to do like Pontius Pilate and wash his hands off any responsibility that his Government has,” PN stated.

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