Prime minister’s spokesperson silent on breach of ethics

Edward Montebello, the government’s head of communications for Prime Minister Robert Abela, has failed to acknowledge or accept any responsibility for a breach of ethics found by the Standards Commissioner last week, which his boss blamed on him.

Standards Commissioner Joe Azzopardi’s report concluded that a video posted on social media by the Office of the Prime Minister breached the code of ethics because its content was more about promoting Abela than any news in the public interest.

The prime minister has defied the Standards Commissioner’s request to apologise.

Instead, in a letter bashing the Commissioner’s probe, the prime minister blamed members of his staff for not following the guidelines.

Questions sent to his head of communications remained unanswered.

Montebello was the head of news at Labour’s ONE TV. He was put on the public payroll as a ‘person of trust’ and leads the prime minister’s communications team.

His office includes three other former ONE TV reporters: Melissa Vella Buhagiar, Claire Azzopardi and Roberta Apap. All the communications team members are political appointees.

                           

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