Toni Abela to be named judge to­mor­row, Grazio Mer­cieca to be ap­pointed mag­is­trate

Malta Independent - - NEWS -

For­mer Labour Party deputy leader Toni Abela will be named a judge to­mor­row, the government said in a state­ment yes­ter­day. The cer­e­mony will also see Dr Grazio Mer­cieca be­ing ap­pointed mag­is­trate.

Dr Abela has, for a long time, served as Labour Party lawyer, as well as the party’s Deputy Leader. Ear­lier this year, his nom­i­na­tion to the Euro­pean Court of Au­di­tors was re­fused by the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment.

The government said that the two ap­point­ments are the first to be made via a com­mit­tee on ju­di­cial ap­point­ments con­sist­ing of the Chief Jus­tice, the At­tor­ney-Gen­eral, the Om­buds­man, the Au­di­tor-Gen­eral and the Pres­i­dent of the Cham­ber of Ad­vo­cates.

Dr Toni Abela grad­u­ated as a no­tary in 1983 and as a lawyer a year later. He was a mem­ber of the Em­ploy­ment Com­mis­sion be­tween 1996 and 1998. The government state­ment says that Dr Abela had a “long ca­reer” in the Labour Party, as well as ear­lier be­ing a founder of Al­ter­nat­tiva Demokratika. He is mar­ried to Marisa Abela and has three chil­dren, Estelle, Fleur and Aaron.

The other co-founder of AD, Wenzu Mintoff, was also ap­pointed judge in this leg­is­la­ture. Both Dr Abela and Dr Mintoff had bro­ken ranks with the Labour Party af­ter the 1987 elec­tion, only to re­turn in later years.

Dr Mer­cieca grad­u­ated as a lawyer in 1982. He has served as a Com­mis­sioner for Jus­tice in the Small Claims Tri­bunal and as an ar­biter spe­cial­is­ing in traf­fic ac­ci­dents. He is mar­ried to Maria and they have three chil­dren, Deb­o­rah, Caro­line and An­ton.

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