Aqra dan l-artiklu bil-Malti.
When reporting on the government’s new appointment of Joseph Cuschieri as the new CEO of Project Green, state broadcaster TVM omitted any details relating to the fact he was found guilty of breaching Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA) rules while leading it until 2020.
Cuschieri was handed the new government role by Environment Minister Miriam Dalli. While PBS reported he was the previous CEO of the MFSA and the Malta Gaming Authority, they did not mention his forced resignation and the various scandals on his watch.
The Shift was informed that instructions to omit this information were issued to the newsroom from the Office of the Prime Minister. The broadcaster stuck to the official government press release and put the story in the “other news” section of the site.
Last December, The Shift revealed how Dalli, a close friend of Cuschieri, asked Abela to appoint him as CEO of Project Green as Steve Ellul was expected to resign to make way for his European elections bid on the Labour Party ticket.
Initially, Abela resisted Dalli’s demands, arguing that Cuschieri was not an ideal candidate for the post due to his track record in regulatory roles and his association with Yorgen Fenech, the man accused of masterminding the assassination of Daphne Caruana Galizia.
Abela reportedly changed his mind, fearing a backlash in the wake of support for disgraced former prime minister Joseph Muscat among Labour Party supporters.
After several controversial years of leading the MGA and the MFSA with little respect for recruitment and procurement rules, Cuschieri was forced to resign after he went on a trip to Las Vegas with Edwina Licari – one of his recruits at the MFSA – paid for by Yorgen Fenech.
Many stories on his conduct later came to light, including the tens of thousands of euros in sponsorships and self-promotion he dished out spent without authorisation and how he was asked to repay thousands in extra remuneration he self-authorised for attending board meetings, which he was not entitled to.
Cuschieri was also found to have breached all rules in recruiting his friend Edwina Licari, putting her on a €120,000 permanent salary as a general consul while touring the world with her on government business.
Miriam Dalli’s special relationship with Cuschieri goes back many years when he gave her a job at communications company Vodafone (now Epic) when she was still a Labour TV reporter.
Just a few months ago, Dalli also gave a job to Cuschieri’s 23-year-old daughter, Katrina as a consultant shortly after she graduated and returned to Malta from London.