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Welcome to the very first commentary post on The Critical Angle project.

This website exists for the sole purpose of holding power accountable. To hold power accountable, we must know what the powerful have been up to lately. In the case of Malta, it’s safe to say that they’ve been up to no good at all.

The data library is crammed to the brim with information because this country is beholden to a complex, intricate web of influential people wielding varying degrees of control over each other and the country’s finances. These influential people, in turn, collude with a few, extremely wealthy businesspeople at your expense.

This library was built to facilitate the difficult task of unravelling how these interests conspire to dominate the overarching narrative and whitewash their crimes against the country’s democratic spirit.

In light of this stated goal, this first post is a list of some of the many questions which the government must answer. These questions are about some of the major scandals we’ve seen over the last decade. They include relevant references to refresh readers’ memories of bitter scandals past.

If the government fails to answer these questions convincingly and with independently sourced evidence that dispels all suspicion of wrongdoing, then there is only one other logical explanation: corruption.

This country will never heal from the open wounds it is currently bleeding out from without answers to these very important questions.

Feel free to ask them a few of these the next time they come round to ask for your vote. And do leave any questions you think I should add in the comments section of this article – the longer the list, the closer the truth.

16 January, 2010: why was then-Opposition leader Joseph Muscat making overtures to the Chinese Communist Party as early as 2010, describing the totalitarian state as a strategic partner to be valued?

One of then-Opposition leader Joseph Muscat’s visits to China in 2010.

2 March, 2010: why did the Labour Party send several high-profile figures – including then-Labour MP Jose’ Herrera, then-Super ONE Chairman Jason Micallef, former Lorry Sant henchman Ronnie Pellegrini, and a whole Super ONE crew – to attend a court hearing in which then-magistrate (now judge) Consuelo Scerri Herrera filed criminal proceedings against Daphne Caruana Galizia for her writings about the former magistrate’s connections with the Labour Party?

29 March, 2010: why did the Labour Party use an “anonymous” website to harass, threaten, and spread damaging rumours about Daphne Caruana Galizia’s family?

26 September, 2012: why did the Labour Party place Daphne Caruana Galizia side-by-side with prominent Nationalist Party figures on multiple billboards throughout the period leading up to the general election in 2013? This, when the journalist herself had repeatedly made her political stance explicitly clear and was never involved in the inner workings of the Nationalist Party?

9 March, 2013: why did then-Opposition leader Joseph Muscat file a complaint with the police singling out Daphne Caruana Galizia for uploading a blog post about him shortly before the general elections of that year? Why was Daphne Caruana Galizia interrogated under arrest over a law most of the country was breaching anyway?

13 March, 2013: why did then-Prime Minister Joseph Muscat appoint former PL deputy leader Anġlu Farrugia as Speaker of the House when Farrugia was and remains clearly unfit for purpose? Was this position a grace-and-favour decision following Farrugia’s outburst about contractors being too close to the Labour Party?

20 March, 2013: why had the Labour Party failed to take decisive disciplinary action against former mayor of Żurrieq Ignatius Farrugia (now currently deputy mayor) for leading a mob that charged at Daphne Caruana Galizia while she was out on a walk in Rabat with two people she knew? Was this tacit approval of physical harassment against critics of the party?

12 April, 2013: why did disgraced former Prime Minister Joseph Muscat, in one of his first judgement calls after being elected, decide to remove former police commissioner John Rizzo from his post? Why did disgraced former EU Commissioner John Dalli return to Malta immediately after Rizzo, who had stated unequivocally that he intended to press charges against Dalli in relation to the SnusGate scandal, was dismissed from his post? Why did Muscat appoint Dalli when his reputation was already tarnished by the biggest scandal the European Commission had seen in decades?

26 June, 2013: why was Norman Vella, a then-TVM presenter who was regularly critical of the Labour Party, summarily dismissed without valid grounds?

9 July, 2013: why did disgraced former energy minister Konrad Mizzi and disgraced former OPM chief of staff Keith Schembri open up offshore companies in Panama just days after the request for proposals for gas supply and power purchase agreements for the power station tender were issued?

8 October, 2013: why did disgraced former prime minister Joseph Muscat enlist the consultancy services of World Bank blacklisted fixer Shiv Nair? Why did he deny his office’s connection to Shiv Nair when the connection was first exposed by Daphne Caruana Galizia?

18 October, 2013: why did the government originally decide to remove the legal obligation to publish the names of people who acquired Maltese citizenship, especially when considering there would be names of those who did so by purchasing a golden passport?

5 November, 2013: why did the Labour Party exclude any mention of its premeditated intent to sell passports from its electoral manifesto?

Disgraced former prime minister Joseph Muscat hawking passports overseas.

17 November, 2013: why did the Labour government lash out at the international press reports which criticised Malta’s decision to sell golden passports by implying that global news coverage was being orchestrated by the Opposition and the independent press?

3 January, 2014: how did Pilatus Bank, a bank owned and fully capitalised by Ali Sadr Hasheminejad, a wealthy Iranian businessman with no prior experience in the banking sector, manage to obtain a license?

13 May, 2014: why did the government sign the power station contract with the Electrogas consortium without inviting the press to attend?

19 June, 2014: why did the government fail to scrutinise the Electrogas consortium’s partners’ finances adequately, to the point where Gasol plc, originally one of the shareholders, quietly de-listed itself from the London Stock Exchange just a few weeks after the contract was signed?

10 October, 2014: why did the government secretly sign a Memorandum of Understanding with Vitals Global Healthcare six months before a request for proposals was formally issued? Why did the government claim to have “lost” this MoU only to then reproduce it three years later when the media got wind of it?

20 November, 2014: why did the government push out a false and therefore misleading narrative about what happened on the evening in which former police minister Manuel Mallia’s driver repeatedly shot at an unarmed civilian?

14 December, 2014: why did disgraced former prime minister Joseph Muscat lead a delegation on a secret visit to Azerbaijan, without informing the press or publishing any kind of announcements?

Disgraced former prime minister Joseph Muscat’s secret trip to Baku.

5 May, 2015: why did the Labour government sign an agreement related to the development of the fraudulent American University of Malta with Sadeen Group when the Jordanian investors had no prior experience in the education sector whatsoever?

29 September, 2015: why did the Labour Party send ONE reporters to trespass on private land to film footage of part of Daphne Caruana Galizia’s property while spinning it as a story about stolen public land?

23 October, 2015: why did the Labour government secretly negotiate additional side agreements with the American University of Malta?

28 April, 2016: why did disgraced former prime minister Joseph Muscat choose to merely reshuffle his Cabinet instead of formally asking for energy minister Konrad Mizzi’s resignation following the revelation of his ownership of an offshore company? Similarly, why did Muscat fail to formally ask for the resignation of his former chief of staff Keith Schembri? Why did the police’s economic crimes unit fail to take any action to investigate Mizzi and Schembri when the Panama papers leak was published?

17 May, 2016: what was disgraced former energy minister Konrad Mizzi doing in Azerbaijan on an undisclosed trip shortly after he was technically stripped of his energy ministry portfolio and demoted to the less high-profile position of minister within the office of the prime minister?

18 May, 2016: why did the Malta Tourism Authority secretly extend a €1 million sponsorship agreement with VistaJet, the same airline operators who provided a private flight to Azerbaijan to Ali Sadr Hasheminejad and another official from Pilatus Bank the night they were filmed leaving the country with suitcases in tow?

13 June, 2017: why did then-finance minister Edward Scicluna imply that the FIAU reports related to the Panama Papers scandal were “written to be leaked”?

From left to right: former finance minister (now Central Bank governor) Edward Scicluna, disgraced former prime minister Joseph Muscat, health minister Chris Fearne.

19 July, 2018: on what grounds did then-finance minister Edward Scicluna reject the European Banking Authority’s conclusions on the FIAU’s failure to proactively apply anti-money laundering directives with regards to Pilatus Bank?

22 July, 2018: why did disgraced former prime minister Joseph Muscat release a redacted copy of the Egrant inquiry, with the inquiry being published in full more than a year later on 17 December, 2019? Why did disgraced former energy minister Konrad Mizzi publicly state that the inquiry absolved himself, Muscat, and everyone who was mentioned in Daphne Caruana Galizia’s blog when in reality, a magisterial inquiry is meant to preserve evidence rather than establish guilt for a crime?

Moreover, the way Muscat’s formal complaint to the police commissioner was worded meant that the magistrate could only focus on whether:

a) the Muscats held any shares in Egrant through Mossack Fonseca’s or Nexia BT’s services and

b) whether the Muscats, Keith Schembri, John Dalli, and Konrad Mizzi engaged in any illicit dealings with Azerbaijani PEPs through bank accounts at Pilatus.

Why did Mizzi rush out to make this statement when he very well knew that the inquiry’s terms of reference were extremely narrow?

Why did Muscat choose these specific terms for the inquiry which knowingly exclude giving the magistrate a wider remit to investigate any and all acts of corruption, money laundering, and any other suspicious or potentially illegal activity carried out by the high-profile Maltese PEPs mentioned above?

11 November, 2018: why did the government stonewall the press’ flurry of questions following the revelations about 17 Black?

20 November, 2018: why did disgraced former prime minister Joseph Muscat still choose to defend his equally disgraced former chief of staff Keith Schembri following the revelations about his “draft business plans” involving 17 Black?

26 June, 2019: why did the government put up as much resistance as possible to the universal calls for a public inquiry into Daphne Caruana Galizia’s murder, including when the Parliamentary Assembly for the Council of Europe overwhelmingly voted in favour of a resolution condemning Malta’s rule of law?

20 September, 2019: why did disgraced former prime minister Joseph Muscat fail to consult Daphne Caruana Galizia’s family in the process of appointing a board for the public inquiry, so much so that the board had to be reconstituted and the terms of reference amended after the family complained about the lack of consultation?

8 November, 2019: why did former finance minister Edward Scicluna, disgraced former tourism minister Konrad Mizzi, and disgraced former economy minister Chris Cardona file an urgent appeal following a decree which had cleared the way for a criminal inquiry to be held into their part in the Vitals Global Healthcare deal, moreso when we now know with certainty that the deal was manifestly fraudulent and corrupt? Why did the former ministers dismiss Repubblika’s 190-page application full of detailed sources and news reports as conjecture when they already knew that the National Audit Office’s investigations into the deal had already shed a great deal of light on the corruption that fueled it?

29 November, 2019: why were journalists detained in Castille while disgraced former prime minister Joseph Muscat left the premises following a six-hour Cabinet meeting and an urgent press conference at 3am?

17 December, 2019: why did the police’s economic crimes unit fail to obtain information about 17 Black’s activities in a timely, urgent manner? Why were investigators reluctant to probe further?

27 January, 2020: why was former MFSA chairman Joe Bannister so complacent and uninterested in the internal affairs of the financial regulator, as was revealed by his answers during a grilling at the public inquiry when he pleaded ignorance about anti-money laundering failures at Pilatus Bank?

10 July, 2020: why did then-justice minister Owen Bonnici contradict disgraced former economic crimes unit deputy head Ian Abdilla shortly after he testified to the public inquiry that Nexia BT had an office at the justice ministry? Why did both Abdilla and his former colleague Antonovich Muscat lie about the extent of cooperation from their Dubai-based counterparts who had only refused to cooperate due to a considerable amount of errors in the Maltese police force’s request for information?

29 September, 2020: why did the government attempt to intervene in the public inquiry’s process by sounding off a deadline when the board of inquiry was instead asking for an extension?

30 October, 2020: why did disgraced former attorney general Peter Grech recommend go-slow approaches towards every major corruption scandal file that landed on his desk, including the Panama Papers scandal and later Pilatus Bank? Why was the attorney general so quick to dismiss Daphne Caruana Galizia’s reporting?

13 November, 2020: why was disgraced former economy minister Chris Cardona overruled by OPM when he told Malta Enterprise to stop the deal with Vitals Global Healthcare due to a due diligence report that raised red flags about two of the shareholders that were involved? Why did Cardona drop his libel case against Daphne Caruana Galizia right before his phone location data would have been analysed to determine where he was on the night Daphne wrote the story about the German brothel?

Disgraced former economy minister Chris Cardona and disgraced former prime minister Joseph Muscat.

27 November, 2020: why did disgraced former energy minister Konrad Mizzi refuse to answer the public inquiry board’s questions during a full two-hour sitting? Why was Mizzi’s only statement to the board made in an attempt to discredit its work, with Mizzi being reluctant to even respond to summons to begin with?

4 December, 2020: similarly, why did disgraced former prime minister Joseph Muscat do his utmost to discredit the public inquiry and his single greatest critic – Daphne Caruana Galizia, the journalist who was killed on his watch – when he is the same former prime minister who had conceded to demands for a public inquiry after dragging his feet on it for years?

15 December, 2020: why did the Labour government fail to distance itself from disgraced former chief of staff to the prime minister Keith Schembri following the public inquiry board’s unequivocal proclamation of Schembri as a witness who is “not credible”?

8 February, 2021: why did Enemalta fail to carry out proper due diligence on Cifidex? Given that the board of directors was found to have a lack of professional scepticism about Cifidex and the wind farm deal, why didn’t the board of directors shoulder responsibility for this loss running into millions of euros by resigning? Why did the police fail to take action against disgraced former energy minister Konrad Mizzi and disgraced former chief of staff to the prime minister Keith Schembri, given that Cifidex wired millions in questionable profits from the deal to Yorgen Fenech’s 17 Black?

15 February, 2021: why did attorney general Victoria Buttigieg issue a nolle prosequi order in favour of two Pilatus bank officials which magistrate Ian Farrugia had recommended criminal action against?

29 March, 2021: why did Nexia BT’s Karl Cini stop the process of opening Bahamas bank accounts for the offshore companies owned by disgraced former energy minister Konrad Mizzi and disgraced former chief of staff to the prime minister Keith Schembri when Daphne Caruana Galizia first hinted at knowing about the offshore structures? Why were Dow’s Media and Macbridge dissolved immediately after Yorgen Fenech was outed as the owner of 17 Black?

2 May, 2021: why have the authorities failed to follow up on the investigation into former police superintendent Ray Aquilina’s known involvement in leaks of sensitive details from the Daphne Caruana Galizia murder investigation to a business associate of Yorgen Fenech? Similarly, why has no action been taken against former deputy police commissioner Silvio Valletta, who was also accused of leaking sensitive information?

9 May, 2021: why have the police force and the attorney general failed to take action against Electrogas shareholder Paul Apap Bologna following media reports which exposed him as the owner of Kittiwake, a secret offshore company that was set up in parallel with 17 Black? Why did the government repeatedly fail to scrap the Electrogas deal as a whole in light of the constantly emerging evidence which cast a massive cloud of suspicion over it?

31 July, 2021: why did the Labour government immediately deny the public inquiry’s conclusion, which stated that the government had to shoulder responsibility for creating a climate of impunity? Why does the government, to this very day, still fail to commit itself to the full implementation of the public inquiry’s findings?

13 September, 2021: why was the police probe into Pilatus Bank purposefully skirting scrutiny of problematic account holders at the bank?

14 January, 2022: why does the government keep refusing to give the press a free hand with the media reform it keeps having to reissue? Why is it intent on steamrolling past all opposition to its legislative amendments which fail to address crucial press freedom issues in Malta?

One Comment

  • Makjavel says:

    Because they collectively murdered Daphne Caruana Galizia.
    Because they had already tried silencing her , by physically attacking her in Zurrieq , the village Clown aka Ignatius Farrugia .
    Because the President of Malta at the time , Marie Louise Coleiro , pardoned Ignatius Farrugia from a jail sentence minutes after he was walking out of the court on his way to jail. The Fastest Jail Break Ever.
    Because the first action Muscat took when he won the election was to get Minister Mallia to organise a silent Coup d’Etat , when Mallia was given the Police , the Media and the Army as his ministry.
    Mallia employed a gun slinger as his driver , and removed all qualified and conscientious persons from the three units.
    Because when Owen Bonnici fresh out of a drinking bout had an accident and turned up 3 days later at the police for a breathalyzer.
    Because the latest decision is to POISON the population with Cancerous Gases that will leach out from the Maghtab Incineration Plant.

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