UPDATED: Prime Minister’s fainting at October 2017 event unreported

The government failed to inform the public of Prime Minister Joseph Muscat’s ailment when he fainted while delivering a speech at an event on 14 October, 2017.

The event held at Le Meridien hotel marked the 30th anniversary of a manufacturing company. Two independent eye witnesses who spoke to The Shift News confirmed Muscat fainted, adding “he looked white as a sheet”.

There was no official statement of the Prime Minister’s ailment. The information was not reported until now.

The event was held just two days before the assassination of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia.

A photo of the Prime Minister delivering his speech, with Economy Minister Chris Cardona present, was published on Manuel Delia’s blog on Sunday.

The health of politicians and public officials is a matter of public interest and concern, but the government chose not to disclose the information.

Yet when Joseph Muscat suffered pain in his eyes following a Labour Party event in Zurrieq in April, 2014, his ailment was widely reported.

In contrast, during the 2013 electoral campaign, then Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi had gone public about his ailing eyesight. Gonzi had informed the public that he was receiving treatment for his ailment in his right eye.

Similarly, the current administration had gone public about former foreign affairs minister George Vella’s minor operation to remove cataracts from his left eye in 2016.

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