Bedingfield among seven government MPs using state funds to boost their image amid election speculation

Over €20 million from taxes, passport sales and development grants used for 'regeneration projects'

 

Government whip Glenn Bedingfield and six other government MPs have spent over €20 million of the public’s money, from taxes, passport sales and development grants, on projects falling exclusively within their own electoral districts, an analysis by The Shift has revealed.

Amid speculation about a possible general election later this year, most MPs and candidates have begun campaigning in earnest – pushing promotional material, going on house visits and snapping pictures with local communities.

Some, however, have been dipping into public funds to do so. Of the seven MPs identified by the The Shift as using State money to promote projects in their own electoral districts, the top three spenders are Bedingfield, Gozo Minister Clint Camilleri and Environment Minister Aaron Farrugia.

Bedingfield, Camilleri and Farrugia’s projects account for three-fourths of a total of around €20.5 million used by government MPs to carry out enhancement projects in their constituencies.

The other four MPs making up the other one-fourth include Parliamentary Secretary for Citizenship Alex Muscat, Finance Minister Clyde Caruana, Tourism Minister Clayton Bartolo and Home Affairs Minister Byron Camilleri.

Bedingfield is chairman of the Cottonera Foundation, a State-funded entity set up specifically for embellishment projects in the former ONE TV reporter’s home territory, which gives him easy access to and control of significant funding for his projects.

Cottonera Foundation has a budget of €7.6 million to carry out 25 restoration projects in the electoral district the MP will be contesting, an initiative that was launched last year.

Gozo Minister Clint Camilleri, meanwhile, spent €3 million on one refurbishment project in Marsalforn alone, a project which he inaugurated three weeks ago with Prime Minister Robert Abela after a previous inauguration in December last year failed to lead to the commencement of works.

Parliamentary Secretary for Citizenship Alex Muscat dished out money generated from Malta’s passport sales scheme on several projects within his own district, as well as committing funds to projects overseen by Infrastructure Minister Ian Borg and Environment Minister Aaron Farrugia.

Muscat spent €2.95 million from the passports fund on an LED floodlighting project on Mosta’s iconic dome, a renovation of Mdina’s lighting system and the landscaping of a formerly abandoned agricultural field that once belonged to notorious murderer Ċikku Fenech, also in Mosta.

Both Mosta and Mdina fall within the parliamentary secretary’s electoral district, and all three projects were announced since the start of summer. Meanwhile, Borg’s Infrastructure Malta, the State agency which will be implementing Mdina’s lighting system, will also be given €2 million in passport funds for other embellishment projects.

Muscat’s munificence extended to the environment minister, who was handed €3 million in passport sales funding for urban greening projects. Farrugia spent €3.05 million on projects falling within the first electoral district – his constituency

Under Farrugia’s orders, two gardens in Floriana and Marsa underwent refurbishment, along with refurbishment works carried out a youth centre in Valletta, as well as a car park in Ħamrun, all of which were regularly promoted on the minister’s Facebook page within the space of a few months.

Finance Minister Clyde Caruana, in conjunction with Energy Minister Miriam Dalli, announced yet another refurbishment project in another garden in Kalkara, a city that falls under Caruana’s electoral district. One million will be spent on what is being described as a “carbon-neutral garden”, a project that was announced on 10 August.

Tourism Minister Clayton Bartolo spent a total of €2.8 million on various embellishment projects. In May, Bartolo, together with Infrastructure Minister Ian Borg, announced a €2 million regeneration project in Għadira Bay.

The minister also set up a 24/7 cleansing unit for the locality of St Paul’s Bay, along with a minor refurbishment along Xemxija’s promenade costing €300,000. Another €140,000 were also spent on a lighting enhancement project for the Belvedere tower in Lija.

Home Affairs Minister Byron Camilleri allocated €90,000 for refurbishment works in Fgura’s parish church, his hometown, another project backed by passport funding and co-announced with parliamentary secretary for citizenship Alex Muscat. Camilleri also announced an additional €90,000 in a local garden and football pitch in Tarxien.

                           
                               
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Mark
Mark
1 month ago

U aktar ma jaġixxu b’diżonestà lejn l-elettorat, oħroġ il-għaġeb iżjed jitilgħu.

M.Galea
M.Galea
1 month ago
Reply to  Mark

Ezatt! X poplu ehh!

Datt
Datt
1 month ago
Reply to  Mark

il Poplu taf xjajdlek. Jien ma jimportantix jekk jisirqux jew le. Jien limportanti li meta mur ghandom jaqbduni Fkollox.

Neputismu u pjaciri galore specjalment meta tasal elezzjoni.

Mhux ta bxejn il ministru Stess qalilom “GAHAN” ghax hajitom jilghaqu srum il ministri biex idahluwom xi job mal gvern jew biex jiehdu xi promotion u jitilghu scale mal gvern jew inkella biex johrogilom xi permess….

Nies OPORTUNISTI, qatta mlaqtin u li ma jaslu mkien jekk ma jilaqghux xi sorm ta ministru. Bhekk spiccajna fdin is sitwazzjoni u gejna greylisted propju habba dawn listess nies li kwotajtom diga.

Proset GAHAN! Kuntent titpaxxa inti u tbamblu lil eluf ta maltin ghax lewwel inti, tieni int u jekk jifdal int ukol ghax hekk jiragunaw.

Last edited 1 month ago by Datt
Godfrey Leone Ganado
Godfrey Leone Ganado
1 month ago

The gallery of the criminals who are collectively guilty of the heinous assassination of Daphne Caruana Galizia.
All time record deficit and government debt, and all time record surplus in their pockets, to accompany them to their eternal grave.
They will now start backstabbing each other in their districts, and fighting for the biggest share of the additional 40,000 specimens of Gahan that they boast of.

viv
viv
1 month ago

Only through reading about Manhattan’s Hell’s Kitchen and Las Vegas can one begin to appreciate how these merciless sociopaths seem to function at liberty.
The future is far from pretty.

Joseph
Joseph
1 month ago

Il-poplu ghandu bzonn jitbissem issa.

M.Galea
M.Galea
1 month ago
Reply to  Joseph

U mela! Daqs tant progetti ghalih! Viva l commissions!

Carmelo Borg
1 month ago

F opinjoni tieghu jekk ma hemm korruzjoni ta flus dawn mumiex jaghmlu xejn ta barra min Hawn. Li jistaw jaghmlu Huwa li qeghdin jimminaw lil shabhom back benchers. Ma ninsewx li l ikbar glieda f ELEZJONI hi bejn il kanditati ta l istess partit.

saviour mamo
saviour mamo
1 month ago

No political party can compete with a political party in government that has millions of Euro in taxpayers’ money at its disposal for propaganda. The NP should start immediately with street protests about it.. To make things worse the institutions refuse to see, hear and talk. The only institution that is near, is the Czar for Standards and the government is doing anything possible to demean him.

Joseph
Joseph
1 month ago

Il-PN u l- poplu messu diga li nduna it-tattika laburista li jaghzlu kanditati ta’ apparenza zghira u attraenti izda wara kollox ma issib xejn ta’ kwalita. Wiehed ma jrid jinsa fl’elezjonijiet li ghaddew, kemm ghamlu ritratti irtukjati tal-ex prim ministru il-balena ghall- illiterat u injorant ghax ghalihom l’ewwel li ma tiekol huwa l’apparenza u l’ghajn. Din wiehed irrid jikonsidra min tal-opposizjoni kollha.

carlo
carlo
1 month ago

and so what? still in power because the corrupt voter wants it that way. we pay for their greed and it seems we’re happy about it. the opposition should find a way how to stop this arrogant lot. bil-paroli mhu ser naghmlu xejn.

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