Speaker says Ja­son Az­zopardi must re­tract ‘min­is­ter lied’ com­ments made against Jus­tice Min­is­ter Owen Bon­nici

Malta Independent - - NEWS -

Speaker of the House Anglu Far­ru­gia yes­ter­day laid down that PN MP Ja­son Az­zopardi must re­tract his state­ments, that Jus­tice Min­is­ter Owen Bon­nici lied in Par­lia­ment re­gard­ing the Hen­ley and Partners Com­mis­sions.

Min­is­ter for Jus­tice Owen Bon­nici had asked the Speaker of the House to in­ves­ti­gate what he claimed to be the breach of par­lia­men­tary priv­i­lege by Shadow Min­is­ter Ja­son Az­zopardi.

On more than one oc­ca­sion, the min­is­ter told the Speaker last week, Dr Az­zopardi claimed that the min­is­ter lied in Par­lia­ment about the com­mis­sions handed to Hen­ley and Partners in the cit­i­zen­ship scheme, af­ter it was re­vealed that Hen­ley and Partners - the con­ces­sion­ar­ies of Malta’s cash-for-pass­ports scheme, earn four per cent com­mis­sion on the sale of gov­ern­ment bonds to those who pur­chase pass­ports

Speaker Anglu Far­ru­gia read out the re­quest by Dr Bon­nici. The min­is­ter also said last week that Op­po­si­tion Leader Si­mon Busut­til had retweeted a num­ber of tweets by Ja­son Az­zopardi, which al­leged that the min­is­ter was a liar, and as a re­sult of MP Az­zopardi’s tweet, it was re­peated on pro­grammes in the me­dia.

PN MP Az­zopardi also asked Speaker Anglu Far­ru­gia to in­ves­ti­gate whether, dur­ing the PAC meet­ing in 2015, the min­is­ter had lied.

The Speaker quoted from the Com­mit­tee meet­ings that took place, as well as the An­nual IIP re­port and other doc­u­ments. He said that the min­is­ter had made clear that there were cer­tain clauses in the con­tract that could not be pub­lished due to com­mer­cial sen­si­tiv­ity and com­pet­i­tiv­ity. He also said that PAC Chair­man To­nio Fenech had re­alised, when the min­is­ter was be­ing asked about some of th­ese clauses, that they would re­ceive funds of more than the €650,000.

The Speaker or­dered that Ja­son Az­zopardi re­tract the state­ments at the first chance he has in Par­lia­ment when he re­turns from abroad.

Min­is­ter for Jus­tice Owen Bon­nici had asked the Speaker of the House to in­ves­ti­gate what he claimed to be the breach of par­lia­men­tary priv­i­lege by Shadow Min­is­ter Ja­son Az­zopardi

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