Opinion: The violator

Robert Abela launched a vicious and dangerous campaign of intimidation and persecution of a magistrate.

Day after day, he attacked the magistrate’s integrity, vilified her reputation, and made the wildest accusations.

Repeatedly, he asserted that the magistrate’s actions “were intended not only to influence the whole electoral campaign but more than that to determine the result”.

He has accused her of bias and failing to rise above her political leanings.  He derided her for “dragging the judicial process down into the partisan political arena”.

What did the magistrate do to deserve these relentless vile attacks? She just did her duty.

All the magistrate did was complete her inquiry and deliver her report, the procès-verbal, to the Attorney General. And that sparked Abela’s rage.

He embarked on a campaign of harassment against a magistrate who is entirely defenceless against Labour’s wrath.

Abela’s message has reached its target – Labour’s grassroots.  Their rage and bitterness were evident when they were interviewed at Abela’s launch of the European Parliament campaign.

The raw emotions Abela managed to stir up in them quickly translated into derogatory terms against the magistrate. They derided not just the magistrate but the entire judicial system.

“They should be ashamed of themselves, the judiciary (il-ġustizzja), their hatred against Joseph Muscat and Robert Abela is incredible, they should be ashamed of themselves,” one Labour supporter lashed out. “Everything was meticulously planned to tarnish Joseph Muscat”.

“What they should do is affix the PN emblem on the columns (of the law courts) because it has become the PN party club,” another fumed.

“The PN headquarters is bankrupt; they can’t even pay their electricity bills, so they found another PN party club called the courts”.

“Do you know what she cost us?” another asked about the inquiring magistrate. “Why didn’t she wait until after the European elections to avoid harming Labour? Because the aim of the magistrate, who is very biased, was to deny Labour its fourth seat.”

Abela knows precisely what he’s doing.  He’s riling up his base.  He’s intentionally enraging them to get out the vote.

That’s pure recklessness.  All it takes is one loose cannon to take it upon himself (it’s almost always a man) to seek revenge from the woman Abela identified as Labour’s enemy.

Abela chose the magistrate as his scapegoat – he’s claiming her actions will determine the result of the 8 June elections,  blaming her for costing Labour its fourth seat and for inflicting humiliation on him and his party.

The Labour Party’s ONE TV conveniently splashed her face on their news bulletin to help the diehards identify her.

An opinion published by the Consultative Council of European Judges condemned behaviour like Abela’s: “Such behaviour also violates international standards”.

The European Judges were categorical:  “Politicians should not use simplistic or demagogic arguments to make criticism of the judiciary during political campaigns… to divert attention from their own shortcomings.  Neither should individual Judges be personally attacked”.

That’s precisely what Abela is doing.  Yet he’s not just any other politician. He’s the prime minister.

He’s the head of the Executive and is duty-bound “to provide all necessary and adequate protection where the functions of the courts are endangered by attacks or intimidations directed at members of the judiciary”.

Prime Minister Robert Abela has a duty to protect the judiciary.  But Party Leader Robert Abela leads the mob in a senseless pursuit of their new hate figure – the inquiring magistrate. And what’s his excuse? She picked the wrong day to submit her report.

“Unbalanced critical commentary by politicians is irresponsible and causes a serious problem because public trust and confidence in the judiciary can thereby be unwittingly or deliberately undermined,” the Consultative Council of European Judges warned.

Abela is not doing it unwittingly.  His witch-hunt is deliberate. As is his attempt to undermine public trust in the judiciary. He must discredit the magistrate now so when the conclusions of that inquiry are finally published, nobody will believe them.

The publication of those conclusions is scaring the living daylights out of the party in government for one reason – those conclusions will reveal the truth and expose the lies Labour told us for almost a decade about the fraudulent Vitals deal and Joseph Muscat.

The Chief Justice and the rest of the judiciary have a duty to protect their colleague. The Consultative council of European Judges specifically directs them to act in her defence.  “In such cases, the judiciary must point out that such behaviour is an attack on the constitution of a democratic state as well as an attack on the legitimacy of another state power – such behaviour also violates international standards”.

The judiciary has an obligation to defend its reputation and the country’s democracy. That seminal opinion of the European Judges highlighted that the three pillars of a democratic society should be complementary “with no one power being supreme or dominating the others”.

That’s exactly what Abela seeks to achieve.  He seeks to dominate.

Abela went one step further.  He leveraged the power of his support base to intimidate the judiciary.

“In this country, the establishment believes that the people should not have the right to oversee and scrutinise some institutions… And this is what the people must decide on 8 June – whether they want to retain their sovereignty or whether they want to relinquish that sovereignty to the establishment.  That judgement should be made by the public… not by a commission where everything happens behind closed doors,” he said, referring to the Commission for the Administration of Justice.

That is not how the judiciary is held accountable.  The European Judges’ Consultative Council specified the three different forms of accountability for the judiciary: judicial, explanatory and punitive.

None of those involves the irresponsible incitement of Party diehards by an utterly reckless prime minister pursuing his own partisan interests to the nation’s detriment.

Robert Abela is a bully who violates international standards, jeopardises the personal safety of a member of the judiciary and torpedoes our democracy – to shift the blame for his impending humiliating loss of Labour’s fourth MEP.


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D M Briffa
D M Briffa
14 days ago

We are at a turning point. Three days ago, 20 groups from the University demonstrated outside the courts. It was the most impressive demonstration I’ve been on. It started on time, the speeches were crisp and on point (take note: PN), and people were electrified. Today, we heard that 200 academics had signed a petition denouncing the attacks on the judiciary.

Now is the moment to strike. The momentum is, at last, building. Now is the time to say “No more”. Tell your relatives. Tell your friends. Tell your work mates.

Get rid of the scum!. Now!

Paul Borg
Paul Borg
14 days ago

The man is despicable, utterly devoid of decency in his quest to retain power.
How many condemnations does this spoilt boy need to come to his senses?
With his tirades, he is riding very close to the edge of the cliff that can send Maltese Society into turmoil last seen in the Mintoff days. Maltese blood may even flow, that is how serious this matter is……..all for the ego of this despicable man.

14 days ago

You always do it Kevin, in that whatever I’m thinking about these Neanderthals you seem to have the knack of putting it more succinctly. Abela is without doubt of Neanderthal ability whereby self preservation is upmost in his daily thoughts, followed by how to entertain the Gahans and make out that he is the “True” leader desperate to disassociate himself from that other Neanderthal who fucked up big time. It won’t be long now as other “squealers” will emerge and bring the whole stinking cabal down.

14 days ago

Bobby, who can afford more than most, forgets that when elderly people with end-stage cancer or living in an ghorfa were forced home, his nanna spent her final few years living in comfort at Karin Grech Hospital, just because she liked it there.

Out of Curiosity
Out of Curiosity
13 days ago

Robert Abela, an elitist in nature and an authoritarian in power is doing his best to show to all his true colours, as well as to perpetuate the darkest side of his soul. Unfortunately, he continues to appeal to those who cannot speak their mind clearly, but with his stupidity and erratic behaviour is starting to lose the trust of many Maltese and Labourites of good character. Malta deserves much better than having a PM and a poltical party in government who undermines democracy in a constant manner. Together we must be the agents of change. United we must stand. Yes we can!

Last edited 13 days ago by Out of Curiosity
joe tedesco
joe tedesco
13 days ago


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