Michelle Muscat signed her own nomination for the volunteer of the year award

Michelle Muscat signed her own nomination for the volunteer of the year award

This morning’s post about Michelle Muscat being awarded the volunteer of the year award found people saying in their reactions that Michelle Muscat should have the good manners of expressing polite embarrassment at the award, decline it and suggest someone less well known but at least equally deserving is recognised for their work.

After all Michelle Muscat is well and truly recognised and recognisable without needing the reward.

But to say Michelle Muscat lacks the good manners of a little false modesty and bashfulness when faced by fawning adulation is to rate her too high.

To win the award of volunteer of the year you have to sign your own nomination. It’s in the rules. No nomination is accepted without the nominee’s signature. Since we can’t possibly think that anyone would break rules to give an award to Michelle Muscat, the only logical conclusion is Michelle Muscat is not only not surprised to get the gong. She actually pitched for it.

Was Michelle Muscat hoping she would be the runner up behind the anonymous people who run Inspire, the St John Rescue Corps and the Malta Red Cross? Of course not.

You see this is not a recognition of the organisations. Not exactly. I will not go into debates on whether the Marigold Foundation is more or less useful than the Red Cross or even than the Rabbit Club (whatever that’s for). But this award is a recognition of the individuals who work within NGOs, or lead them.

The whole point here is that anonymous volunteers are all recognised through the prize awarded to the least one among them.

But there’s a bigger implication here. Michelle Muscat applies for this award to steal attention that other volunteers need much more than she does. In doing so she suffocates the opportunity of some other NGO or NGOs in getting some exposure and attracting funding and support from the community.

People flock to Michelle Muscat’s NGO in order to ingratiate themselves and seek favour with her and through her, her husband. You might think that is quite all right if she’s not pocketing the money and it’s going to a good cause. But it’s going to a cause of her choice. What basis is there for her cause to take precedence over others when all there is to give it more merit is her connection to the most powerful political leader in the land?

And in any case she’s not even a proper volunteer. If any of us got a car, chauffer and personal assistant from the office, we’d have to pay taxes on them as perks. The other volunteers she beat to today’s award have none of this.

This is not just about vanity and bogan ostentation. This is about corruption. And when corruption meets charity it is almost worse than any other form. Because it exploits the vulnerable and profits from them.

Corruption is not just about the handing over of brown envelopes or 6-figure transfers from Dubai bank accounts. It is also transacting in favour and ingratiation.

The politicisation of charity is an abhorrence in and of itself. If politicians are concerned about the vulnerable they have the means to legislate, tax wealth and redistribute it to ensure a balance in social well-being. Charity short-circuits that. When done by grass-roots volunteers or by members of civil society like churches and schools, charity is an act of protest. It is an act of raising funds and effort on a voluntary basis to make up for the failures of the state.

But when politicians lead charity they are papering over their own failure to ensure a just and inclusive society and, what’s worse, claim credit for it.

It was bad enough when we reduced the office of the President of Malta to a salvation army second hand good store. Continuing the patronising activities of colonial Mrs Governor who cut their boredom by organising Palace tea parties for military wives to raise crumbs for the natives was relatively harmless. But for the last few years the President has been stripped of the dignity and gravitas that office requires and transformed into the last thing the President of a country should be: a beggar and a bully.

The beggar bit is obvious. Bully, because the pressure to break records when raising funds is applied on businesses and NGOs that are forced to direct their charity budgets to the President’s cause rather than any other.

Now prime ministers have stepped in, or at least this one did with a wife who is more enthusiastic than most for the opportunity to grin inanely at the camera. Appeasing a demanding fund-raising President is harmless. Funding a demanding prime minister’s wife is nothing short of corrupt.


  • Fred the Red

    Jaqq!

  • Manuel Camilleri

    Eva Peron – the Maltese nauseating version.

    • Andrea Pace

      Evita Muscat

      • Joseph Grech

        Nixtieq nevita’, imma ma nistax.

  • thedirectone

    Why do you think she suddenly arrive on the scene, Egrant was after the horrible assassination of Daphne out of the picture, so, she’s so vain that she took this opportunity to come in the picture again. I feel really sorry for the REAL contenders .

  • A Attard

    The main problem with such people, and there are quite a number of them, is not the selfishness, the self-gratification, the ambition, the greediness, and whatever other adjective or trait one might attribute to them – it is the pure lack of foresight of the consequences of their actions. The maltese saying “jaraw biss sal-ponta ta’ mneħirhom” is especially fitting.

    • Mac Taylor

      So true. Stupidity is the hallmark of dictators. The more they consolidate their position in power, the stupider they become.

      First you have power, then you use it, then you abuse it, then you lose it.

  • T Borg

    I happen to know two of the other nominees and I know the sterling work they do. It’s not just about fund raising but about getting your hands dirty, doing acts of kindness for others. Now that I know two other nominees, i am even more disgusted that Ms. Muscat got the award. Shame on her.

    You rightly point out that : “Michelle Muscat applies for this award to steal attention that other volunteers need much more than she does. In doing so she suffocates the opportunity of some other NGO or NGOs in getting some exposure and attracting funding and support from the community.” This is the crux of her shameful act.

  • quickmick408

    This charlatan is as grotesque as her old man Muscrat, she obviously thinks that EGRANT has been buried and has now surfaced to collect as many accolades as possible. A vile conniving excuse for a charity ambassador, can’t wait till it all comes out and exposes her incredulous vanity.

  • Anthony T Mamo

    Spot on. As usual.

  • Eagle One

    Just remember Matthew 20:16; “So the last will be first, and the first will be last.” and without the need for signing your nomination!

  • Queen B

    Also why does the Public Library recruit volunteers to record audio books for the Special Needs Unit when this is a government entity? It baffles me that the government finds so much money to pay consultants for this and that, and then relies on public generosity for the venture I mentioned.

    • Franġiska

      Anke l-isptar Mater Dei hemm il-volontarji. X’jagħmlu eżatt ma nafx imma hekk jgħidu li huma voluntiera u jien narahom jew jinfilzaw xi ittri ġol-invilops jew jitwu xi karti!

  • Mario Damato
  • Joe Bloggs
  • Carl Edgar Consiglio

    The longer they are in power, the more it all goes to their head, the less and less subtle the snaking about becomes.

  • Mac Taylor

    Would I get the privilege of total protection by publicly financed resources if I were to cross the Gozo-Malta Channel for a charitable cause? I think not.

    What Ms. Michelle Muscat does is al for media points and thus votes for the Labour Party. It’s so easy to see though her fakery. The Labour Party lives and thrives on smokes and mirrors, mediatic shows, theatrics, character assassinations and pure lies.

    This award is a fake one and shames us all.

  • Antoine Vella

    From Lovin Malta:

    “The Council (i.e. Malta Council for the Voluntary Sector) is a government entity made up of representatives from Voluntary Organisations and one representative from the Government. The members are appointed by the Minister of Education, Employment and the Family every two years.”

    Am I understanding correctly? The minister decides who represents the NGOs? Not the NGOs themselves?

    • Joshua V

      This means that the appointed members on the Council had no choice other than voting for their master’s spouse. This is corruption at its best even though we’re speaking about the Voluntary Sector.

      By the way, how much are these members PAID to sit on this Council for the ‘VOLUNTARY’ Sector? And can we have their names?

  • Chris Briffa

    This is totally pathetic and unacceptable. A joke of a country.

  • Mariatheresa Micallef

    …but listen here, if her darling husband gets to have the national orchestra playing his favourite songs then she has to get an award (of some sort), n’est pas?
    Freaking patronising couple that they are!

    • RF

      Following the successful publication of “Invicta” dedicated to Daphne, I bet the ‘First Lady’ would want a book published in her honour. “Invidia” would be an apt name.

  • Ruth Bonnici

    Where is the head banging emoji ???????

  • Mary T. O`Cracy

    Someone might have an ego problem and try to boost it with fake philanthropy while they live in a bourgeois bubble and where thier foundation is merely a façade.

  • Angela Galea

    Such rewards are utterly pointless, vain and serve no purpose whatsoever in the field of voluntary work. NGOs should not be rivals and competing with each other for rewards. All have their own merit.

  • r jones

    Interesting. If the whistle-blowers’ allegations prove to be true, this will be the first time that the recipient of the award would have a secret offshore company in Panama.

  • Imsomeonetoo
  • Rosella Darmanin

    This photo is a great insult to Mother Theresa’s community.