Far be it from me to distract Minister Fearne from his duties at this time. He can answer for his part in all of this in the future, and his part was anyway relatively minimal, in the circumstances, he was just another minister nodding when Joseph Muscat said jump. There are plenty of ministers who have little to do and who should take some responsibility to investigate, rather than letting Fearne try to fight the mixed messages that keep getting sent out.
That’s if the PM doesn’t want to do it himself.
That being as it may be, there are other people in and recently departed from Government who have questions to answer and they need to be answering them sooner, rather than later.
They need to be answering them – properly distanced from their interlocutors, lest they infect them with the stench of corruption that wafts from their every pore, not to mention COVID-19 – in a dimly lit room at Police HQ, with full respect for their legal rights, of course.
Whether a bright light can be shone into their eyes and whether large policemen can lurk behind them, tapping a truncheon delicately into their palms, is debatable. I doubt these tactics are still legal. And they can have a lawyer of their choice present, assuming they can find one to risk his health and his family’s to give them service. After all, it’s unlikely that this sort of legal service would be as remunerative as giving advice on multi-million euro contracts.
Who should be answering what sort of questions, you might be wondering?
Well, here goes, and bear in mind that this is just my ageing memory being jogged along by the press reports over the weekend and today. In no order of importance, cast your eyes over these.
The ITS eviction and banishment to Smart City pops into my head.
dB have all but come out celebrating their vindication by the National Audit Office, though in this regard, I can only surmise that their public relations people must have studied at the Donald J. Trump School of Lying in Your Teeth. Anyway, dB don’t have to answer for anything, it’s the people on the government side who need to answer questions here, and also answer why they refused to talk to the NAO.
Answers are expected from Konrad Mizzi, erstwhile Minister for Tourism and responsible for more than that not long before he became the tourism man. In case you’ve forgotten, he was given a consultancy agreement with the Malta Tourism Authority when he resigned (in disgrace) from being minister responsible for tourism, which is something else he needs to answer for, as do the people who gave him the job, thankfully short lived.
Perhaps not coincidentally, the next thing to jump up and down in my mind is the deal that the Government had entered into with Vitals, soon to be taken over by Steward. I sometimes wonder how Armin Ernst managed to keep which dotted line to sign but he’s not a public servant, and we don’t pay his salary. (Well, anyway…)
So in handing over a good chunk of our health-related assets, the government saw fit to enter into a contract whereby t’other side would get many, many millions if the contract goes South (or East or West or North) for whatever reason.
This is the gist of the MaltaToday report on Sunday and not having actually seen the wording of the contract, I would hesitate to lay down the law and say that whoever signed this travesty of a contract should be taken out and shot (and that is only a figure of speech before anyone gets all antsy).
And I would, for the same reason, be less than fair if I were to wonder out loud whether the lawyers who had advised Konrat Mizzi – yes folks, him again – shouldn’t have their warrant revoked. After all, it’s the client’s affair if he chose to engage lawyers who are idiots or who would only tell him what he wanted to hear or if he chose to ignore a decent lawyer’s advice.
Being as no-one denied the MaltaToday report, whoever signed it – and whoever approved its signing – needs to be sitting in the dimly-lit room I mentioned earlier.
Moving along, good old Peanuts Scicluna saw fit to tell us that, hey, electricity rates can’t be monkeyed around with in these times of economic mayhem because, according to the reports, the Chinese are part-owners of the generation facility and all that and, hey again, they have the right to say ‘yay or nay’ to any wheeze that diminishes their revenue.
But they sent us 100,000 face-masks, so thanks, guys.
And, if you would be so kind, who was running the show when Electrogas got their paws into this nifty little honey-pot? Buzz, correct answer, Konrat Mizzi, come on down.
Come on down and get into the car with blue flashing lights on top, if you would be so kind. Joseph Muscat and Keith Schembri send their regards and hope to see you around soon.