The high-ranking police officer who resigned after threatening Repubblika President Robert Aquilina with the removal of his police protection is Superintendent Victor Aquilina.
Aquilina has been identified through photographs of the protest held at Castille in December 2019 calling for the resignation of then-prime minister Joseph Muscat.
The NGO’s president referred to the police officer’s resignation in a television interview on the Net TV programme Magħkhom and although the comment was widely reported, the officer’s name has so far not been revealed.
The officer’s alleged “blackmail” took place in October 2021 during a three-day sit-in protest by Repubblika in front of the police headquarters. The protest highlighted police inaction on former minister Konrad Mizzi, who was responsible for major projects tainted with accusations of corruption such as the Electrogas energy deal and the Steward Healthcare hospitals privatisation, among others.
On his way into a meeting with Police Commissioner Angelo Gafa while the 72-hour protest was in progress, the superintendent allegedly threatened to remove Aquilina’s police protection if the banner draped on the gates of the police headquarters in Floriana was not removed.
The activists had hung up a banner showing Police Commissioner Angelo Gafa, Prime Minister Robert Abela, Konrad Mizzi and former prime minister Joseph Muscat with the words “Shame on you”.
Aquilina had first been told the police would not be taking any action against the officer in question. An investigation by the Major Crimes Unit (CID) was carried out this year after Aquilina demanded to know how the officer had been let off the hook.
The notary and activist said during the interview that the officer has already been given another government job that he will be taking up once his resignation comes into effect on 8 January. The Shift is informed that the officer’s new job is at Identity Malta but it is not yet possible to verify the information until the new position is assumed.