Financial investigations were ordered by the University of Malta into alleged malpractice and financial misconduct by Joe Mifsud, the “Mystery Professor” currently being named in connection with investigations into alleged Russian interference in the last US presidential elections.
Ten days after I first asked them, the University of Malta has finally replied to questions regarding Joe Mifsud, the so-called “Mystery Professor” in the midst of ongoing FBI investigations connecting with alleged attempts by the Trump Campaign to benefit politically from illegally obtained information provided by the Russian secret service.
Journalists from the New York Times and other media houses have complained with me about reticence by the University of Malta to even discuss Joe Mifsud’s time there even if he appears to have worked there in some role or other for the better part of 17 years.
My questions concerned the manner of Joe Mifsud’s departure from his University post around 2007 to 2008.
Replies have finally started trickling in. “University had at the time commissioned an auditing firm to conduct an inquiry on procurement and financial transactions conducted by the then European Unit for which Dr Mifsud was responsible. The findings from the investigation were indicative but not conclusive and hence could not be used to proceed with any action against Dr Mifsud’s management of financial matters of this unit. We can confirm that a number of communications (e-mails and letters) were sent to Dr Mifsud asking him to provide information relating to financial matters.”
He does not appear to have replied in any way whether to the letters and emails from the University or the commissioned audit into his affairs at the EU programs unit.
Which is to say no action as such was taken. However I asked whether Joe Mifsud had been fired or he resigned. The answer was a bit of both.
“Dr Joe Mifsud resigned in December 2007 following a period during which he was released from his duties at the University to work with the Minister for Foreign Affairs. Dr Mifsud was asked to return to his post at the University following the lapse of one year from his release. As Dr Mifsud did not return to his post, University commenced procedures to terminate his employment but he resigned a few days later in December 2007.
The international press is referring to Joe Mifsud as the “mystery professor” given how slippery he appears to be. One of the mysterious things about him is how actually he got his “professorship”. Malta’s University has now confirmed it is not to blame. “We are not aware that Dr Mifsud has acquired a professorship but can confirm that it was not the University which awarded him such title. In fact, as a member of the academic staff, Dr Mifsud was a Senior Lecturer when he resigned in December 2007”.
Here’s a link to the New York Times’ latest in-depth look into Joe Mifsud. Not that all that many questions are answered.
The photo with this post is from the Associated Press.