Malta Today is reporting that people acting on instructions of the party leader have met MP Ivan Bartolo and in seeking to persuade him to quit his parliamentary seat to allow for Adrian Delia’s co-option, offered Mr Bartolo a salaried consultancy position that would make up for the loss of his parliamentary earnings.

Malta Today appears not to be carrying any corroboration of this information. Their sources are unidentified and Mr Bartolo himself refused to confirm the information to them.

It is understood that a lobbying effort to persuade Ivan Bartolo to resign would carry some form of political incentive or other. The report speaks of the Mayorship of Mosta which Bartolo occupied in the past and resigned on his election to Parliament. Obviously the Mayorship is not in the PN’s gift but they may have promised the party’s backing at the 2018 local elections. Presumably that is what they meant. Undertaking political support is par for the course for a political party. That is their stock in trade and perfectly legitimate. Other aspiring Councillors may feel it is unfair but no one can suggest it is outside the rules.

Offering a salaried position in an attempt to persuade an MP to act a certain way is stepping into an altogether different territory.

If it is true they have made an offer of a salaried position they would be wondering if they have crossed a line. They should look behind them.

This sounds uncomfortably like an offer of a gift and there are no nice nouns to be used when that happens.

Careful there.

I look forward to a clear denial of the Malta Today’s report.