“We have been saying this for a long time – police commissioner Angelo Gafa’ and assistant commissioner Alexandra Mamo have not achieved any kind of result in the two years they’ve been warming their seats,” the president of NGO Repubblika told the press outside the police’s headquarters earlier on Tuesday.
“The people of Malta deserve a transparent and accountable police force. Anything less than that is simply not acceptable,” the president of the NGO Robert Aquilina added.
Repubblika was holding a press conference in front of the police’s headquarters to urge the police force’s leadership to hold a press conference in which journalists would be allowed all the time they need to ask questions about the police force’s investigations.
“Gafa’ and Mamo can no longer keep their mouths shut. They can no longer hide behind excuses of ‘ongoing investigations’. We know that these so-called investigations are intended only to delay and stretch out the process,” Aquilina said.
Repubblika’s press conference occurred in the wake of the police force’s embarrassing lack of initiative in the case of Iosif Galea, the former Malta Gaming Authority compliance officer who was the subject of a European Arrest Warrant issued by the German police.
While the German police had issued a warrant for Galea’s arrest more than a year ago, Malta’s police force issued a European Arrest Warrant only after Italian authorities had already arrested Galea while on holiday with disgraced former prime minister Joseph Muscat.
“Even in this case, there is no need for a lengthy investigation to get to the truth. The people who were responsible for enforcing this warrant can be counted on one hand – to say that you are simply investigating is not enough. It is only a way to not be held accountable by the people paying your salary,” Aquilina said on Tuesday.
Besides Galea’s case, Aquilina listed a litany of other individuals who have not faced any kind of prosecution from the police force, including the seven-year delay in bringing Keith Schembri’s cousin, Ryan Schembri, to justice following the infamous More Supermarkets saga.
Repubblika also slammed the police force’s inaction in relation to the questionable plea deal signed between Darren ‘it-Topo’ Debono and attorney general Victoria Buttigieg and the lack of following up on the cases of former assistant commissioner Ian Abdilla, former police commissioner Lawrence Cutajar, former deputy commissioner Silvio Valletta, and former economic crimes unit officer Raymond Aquilina.
“Maltese and Gozitan people have the right to know about what these people who are supposed to administrate justice in their name are up to. Gafa’ and Mamo can no longer deny us the sacrosanct right,” Aquilina said.