What a complete mess. At any other time I’d be writing about Jeffrey Pullicino Orlando and Jason Micallef and the open disputes among Labour Party supporters. Or I could be writing about the state of the Nationalist Party. And so on. But all that feels irrelevant noise with all that’s going on.
First item on the agenda is bringing Daphne’s killers to justice. In the midst of all the confusion, the drip feeding of sources to reporters, the selective commentary by the prime minister, the official silence of investigators, the disgraceful behaviour of the Home Minister, we are officially being told we are on the brink of truth. Joseph Muscat is calling it a “solution”, my literal translation from the Maltese jargon of “jissolva l-każ”.
I cannot help thinking that what is being solved, or answered here, is not the truth about Daphne’s killing. What is being solved is the obvious political consequence – and in the case of some individuals, the criminal and penal consequence – of this crime.
Joseph Muscat has every motivation to find a way out for himself and for Keith Schembri and the others. Security briefings have told him for months that Yorgen Fenech was a suspect. And yet he met him. And Keith Schembri met him and briefed him. Tapes confirm the security services knew about Yorgen Fenech and Melvin Theuma’s involvement in the murder for months. Since they report to the prime minister, the prime minister knew as well.
Yet for months no arrests occurred. On the contrary, a cover-up ensued.
Now Joseph Muscat has traded with Melvin Theuma a pardon. Understand that a pardon from a charge of premeditated murder is the difference between the rest of his life in prison or the rest of his life out of it.
Now Keith Schembri has been caught perverting the course of justice by coordinating Yorgen Fenech ahead of his arrest.
Now combine all that. Have messages been sent to Melvin Theuma to exchange his freedom with pinning the whole thing on Yorgen Fenech and say he acted alone?
I’m not saying I know this happened. Let me be clear, I don’t know that this happened.
But Keith Schembri by his own account describes Joseph Muscat as his “best friend”. What is more likely: that Joseph Muscat would be willing to use one of the last cards available to him to protect his “best friend” or not?
Instead of the release the victim’s family and this country deserves from justice we risk being faced by the horror of doubt that what is happening in front of our eyes is justice at all.
That horror will not go away while Joseph Muscat remains the chief investigator of the murder his “best friend” is implicated in.