Energy Minister Miriam Dalli spent €250,000 in direct orders in May to organise a one-day summit for energy ministers from Mediterranean countries with the beneficiaries including her former colleagues and companies close to the Labour Party.
The MED9 Energy Ministerial Meeting summit is an informal grouping created to discuss issues of common interest in the region, including the green transition and secure energy supplies. The format, however, does not hold decision-making powers, and the Italian energy minister did not even show up at May’s event.
According to information published in the Government Gazette, Dalli spent significant money on direct orders for the one-day event, starting with €8,000 for her former colleague at Labour’s One TV, Matthew Carbone, as “event coordinator”.
Carbone was disgraced former prime minister Joseph Muscat’s head of communications until his sudden and unexpected departure as soon as Robert Abela took over Castille.
In the meantime, he was given another political appointment as an ‘advisor’ to Parliamentary Secretary Chris Bonnet and started working as a private consultant, receiving government direct orders like the one from Dalli.
ICan Ltd, a company owned by Keith Chetcuti, the former CEO of Keith Schembri’s Kasco business, was paid €73,000 through a direct order to provide audiovisual services and “related supplies”, while Big Exhibit Ltd was paid €82,000 for the meeting’s “set up”.
Among other direct orders issued by Dalli was one for €6,500 to Tribe, a company co-owned by Sam Dalli, another former ONE TV employee, tasked with filming the event.
Ikona Artworks, owned by former ONE TV employees, known for working on marketing and design for the Labour Party during its electoral campaigns, and a regular recipient of government direct orders, was paid €26,000 for “design artwork and notepads”.
Enemalta chairman is back
Meanwhile, Jonathan Scerri, a former Enemalta chairman who left the company just seven months after his appointment by Dalli, is back working with the energy minister.
Scerri, an engineer by profession who spent most of his working life at Enemalta, set up his private consultancy, Logika Advisory, in January 2021.
In October 2021, Minister Dalli, in a move to start a fresh page at the beleaguered state energy provider, appointed Scerri as chairman and Jonathan Cardona as CEO.
But despite his departure, Scerri was handed a direct order for “energy-related technical advice” in January 2023 with a value of €50,400.
Scerri has served on many government boards since 2013 and was previously the CEO of Wasteserv.