Zammit Lewis failed to declare family relationship with former AG Peter Grech before hiring him

While justice minister, Edward Zammit Lewis gave the former Attorney General a lucrative consultancy only weeks after Peter Grech resigned

 

Former justice minister Edward Zammit Lewis failed to declare his family relationship with former Attorney Peter Grech when he handed him a controversial lucrative consultancy job just a few weeks after he resigned in 2020.

The Shift has learned that while Grech was awarded the 62,000 consultant’s contract on the direct instructions of Zammit Lewis – at the time serving as justice minister –  Zammit Lewis failed to state that his new consultant’s son is married to Zammit Lewis’s niece.

The former minister is very close to his niece, his sister Helen Caruana’s daughter, and acted as her witness during her marriage to Grech’s son in 2018. Zammit Lewis’ sister serves as a Labour councillor in the Attard Local Council. 

Zammit Lewis did not reply to questions on whether his relations with the former Attorney General influenced his decision to give Peter Grech a plum job funded by taxpayers. Grech’s last years as Attorney General were marked by controversy with citizens calling for his resignation following his failure to act on major government scandals.

Shortly after Grech resigned in September 2020, Zammit Lewis had defended Peter Grech’s performance at the Attorney General’s office. In an interview with The Malta Independent, Zammit Lewis described Grech as a “gentleman who tried to do his duty”.

“I wouldn’t say he failed in his duty,” Zammit Lewis told journalists after Grech’s resignation. “Peter Grech tried to do his best. It was interpreted and there were circumstances which he might not have had control over, but I cannot say that Peter Grech did not do his duty as Attorney General.”

Appointed in 2010, Grech came under intense public pressure to resign over his failure to take any action against politicians and ministers in the highest echelons of disgraced former prime minister Joseph Muscat’s government.

One of the most egregious examples of his inaction concerned the 2016 Panama Papers revelations, which exposed secret bank accounts involving the then prime minister’s chief of staff Keith Schembri and sitting minister Konrad Mizzi.

Instead of ordering immediate action, Grech told the police to go slow on that investigation, which also delayed the confiscation of crucial evidence that could lead to the finding of guilt in a court prosecution.

At the time, Zammit Lewis was one of the closest cabinet members to Joseph Muscat.

                           
                               
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Francis Said
Francis Said
23 hours ago

Thankfully is a back bencher. He was the most incompetent Minister or PS in Muscat’s government of sorts
When he was responsible of Air Malta he tried Alitalia as a strategic partner. Is it possible he did not know that Alitalia was bankrupt.
As Justice Minister, he did not come up with one decent suggestion to have our Courts of Law more efficient. Pft

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