Women’s rights activists say domestic violence claims must be investigated. And Simone Cini?

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2019-01-04T12:11:57+02:00Fri, 4th Jan '19, 12:10|0 Comments

The Malta Confederation of Women’s Organisations made a statement last night saying it does not matter who is involved, any claims of domestic violence should be taken seriously and thoroughly investigated.

“It takes a lot of courage for survivors of Domestic Violence to lodge a claim and try to bring an end to it. For this reason, these persons should not be victimised further or be threatened in any way. Instead, they should be given the support they need to exit from this situation.”

Although they do not name him, the activists are clearly referring to allegations made by the Leader of the Opposition’s wife.

The MCWO says it is an umbrella organisation that represents 12 local member organisations “which collectively have around 24,000 female members”. 

They campaign against domestic violence and their Facebook page includes posts by Domestic Violence Commissioner Simone Cini on the subject.

This is proving to be the first test for the Domestic Violence Commissioner. Her loyalties are clearly conflicted. She has expressed no outrage at the allegations and she has shared on her Facebook page posts that are making judgement calls about what has happened in a way that excuses the alleged perpetrator of violence.

Look at this.

Clearly, the person posting this is right that no one should be rushing to judgement about incidents inside the Delia household on the back of video clips and audio recordings. I have written as much myself on this blog.

But consider this quote: “Nahseb hadd qatt ma ggieled mal mara jew mat tfal u tilef l’erre.” (sic).

I would have expected the Domestic Violence Commissioner to say that ‘losing it’ is no excuse for violence and abuse. And that if a woman has had the courage to report her husband for abuse, the matter should not be hushed up because he justifies himself for ‘losing it’.

But the Domestic Violence Commissioner is central to the operation of the Labour Party and the Labour Party’s primary interest is not the pursuit of perpetrators of domestic violence but the preservation of Adrian Delia as leader of the PN.

The statement yesterday by the women’s rights activists is a challenge to the institutions to prioritise their responsibility to protect women who come forward with allegations of abuse and that their claims are thoroughly investigated before being discarded.

But we are entirely familiar with what governs institutions here.

I had no idea how quickly and how starkly the moment would come when the appointment of a Super One hack to the post of Commissioner for Domestic Violence becomes an obvious conflict.

They’re being subtle about it, but women’s organisations are not liking it one bit.