Daphne Caruana Galizia Foundation awarded European Parliament’s Citizen’s Prize for Malta

The Daphne Caruana Galizia Foundation was awarded this year’s European Parliament’s Citizen’s Prize for Malta in a ceremony at Europe House on Friday.

The prize goes to projects organised by people or organisations that encourage mutual understanding and closer integration between people in the EU, cross-border cooperation that builds a stronger European spirit, and the promotion of European values and fundamental rights.

European Parliament President Roberta Metsola said in a video message: “Daphne Caruana Galizia was killed because she was not afraid to expose corruption. We want those responsible for this criminal act, those who allowed it all to be carried out, and those who tried to cover it up, to face justice.”

Metsola stressed the need to have European and national systems to prevent what happened to Daphne from ever happening again, in Malta or anywhere else. “I cannot think of a more deserving cause than this one to receive the European Citizen’s Prize: citizenship of values, of right, of the search for the truth – values that give identity.”

MEP David Casa, who nominated this year’s winners, was present at the ceremony. He said the Foundation’s work “has led to important victories for human rights, the protection of journalists, and access to information”.

The Foundation, Casa added, “has displayed its commitment to democracy and the rule of law in its fight for a public inquiry, in its efforts to build capacity among activists and journalists, and in all its other public interest initiatives since.”

Matthew Caruana Galizia (left), Director of the Daphne Foundation, speaking after receiving the prize from MEP David Casa (centre) with the Head of the EP Office in Malta Mario Sammut (right). Photo: EP

Matthew Caruana Galizia, son of assassinated journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia and the Foundation’s director, paid tribute to all supporters of the family’s work when receiving the prize.

“We’ll get justice for my mother and her investigations thanks to the efforts of thousands of people and organisations who protest, support this campaign and take action. We accept this prize on behalf of all of you,” he said.

He was speaking shortly after the trial verdict in which the two men accused of Caruana Galizia’s assassination admitted to the crime and were sentenced to 40 years in prison.

“It should really have been my mother receiving this prize. What we have achieved will never get close to what my mother achieved in her lifetime. She really changed our country for the better; her entire life demonstrates that, not just her death. I’m extremely proud of what we managed to do; it shows what a small group of people who are highly motivated can do with the little resources that they have,” Caruana Galizia added.

Today’s Citizen’s Prize award ceremony in Malta will be followed by an EU-wide ceremony in Brussels for citizens recognised with this award in the different Member States on 8 November at the European Parliament.

Other recent winners of this award in Malta include Id-Dar tal-Providenza, the Malta Lockdown Festival, and Bjorn Formosa of ALS Malta.


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