Activists slam law enforcement officials for protecting those in power

Thirty-three months since the brutal assassination of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia, a crowd gathers to renew the call for justice.

Daphne Caruana Galizia
A man holds a photo of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia who was assassinated by a car bomb on 16 October 2017. Photo: Joanna Demarco

Daphne Caruana Galizia’s warning against the people who are now at the centre of scandals as a result of shocking revelations in court was a recurring theme in speeches marking 33 months since the journalist was assassinated by a car bomb in Malta.

Joanna Agius, an activist who joined the Occupy Justice movement created following Caruana Galizia’s brutal killing, pointed out that the journalist had warned the public about the people the public now knows helped those in power get away with their crimes.

She said that under now-disgraced former Prime Minister Joseph Muscat, the web of criminality did not only spread but managed to strangle the country.

Agius said Daphne was right about former Police Commissioner Lawrence Cutajar and the former head of the Economic Crimes Unit Ian Abdilla. “She warned us not to trust Attorney General Peter Grech and warned us against Joseph Muscat, Keith Schembri and Konrad Mizzi.”

“She warned us that the police commissioner was a puppet placed to protect the government and not the people, who refused to speak to journalists in a transparent manner and who was a threat to democracy,” Agius added.

On Abdilla, Daphne had said he did not act on investigations when he was duty bound to make arrests. She also pointed out he should not have formed part of the Egrant inquiry.

Agius said that Cutajar was fired and Abdilla was transferred but this was not enough.

She referred to the latest revelations in court, where it emerged that the Attorney General had instructed the authorities not to seize documents related to the Panama Papers.

“With one scandal after another, I am sorry to say that nothing surprises us anymore,” she added.

The crowd gathered outside the law courts where the case on Yorgen Fenech, the suspected mastermind in the murder, continued earlier today.

Alessandra Dee Crespo also addressed those who gathered at the Great Siege memorial. She started off by ‘thanking’ Prime Minister Robert Abela for setting a deadline for the Memorandum of Understanding signed between the government and VGH to be ‘found’.

The MOU was passed on to the National Auditor’s Office following a scathing report on the hospitals’ deal. The government as well as the NAO have not made this document public, but The Shift managed to gather information from multiple sources, and other documents, that sheds light on its contents and importance.

“When something is found on command, most of the time it’s either hidden or ready to be found,” Dee Crespo.

She mentioned a list of deadlines the Prime Minister should set for a number of pressing issues. Dee Crespo mentioned Schembri’s missing phone and the missing resignation letter by Joseph Muscat that President George Vella has refused to publish. 

She also called on the Prime Minister to set a deadline for the Attorney General to resign and another deadline to have Muscat, Schembri and Mizzi questioned over documented corruption.

“Set a deadline to bring to court all those implicated in the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia,” she said.

Before concluding, Dee Crespo reminded the Prime Minister that the European Commission had urged a parliamentary discussion and investigation on the Malta – Montenegro deal.

A poem by Paul Ellul, in memory of Caruana Galizia, was also read out to those who gathered in Valletta.

The vigil was organised by Occupy Justice, Manuel Delia and Repubblika.

Former Malta police commissioner Lawrence Cutajar.

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