This is a resignation matter, and woe betide us if we fail to understand why

Published: June 28, 2013 at 8:09pm
Manuel Mallia: an absolute disaster from day one. But this could have been foreseen: he is not just somebody with a client base of Malta's top criminals. He is also pretty thick.

Manuel Mallia: an absolute disaster from day one. But this could have been foreseen: he is not just somebody with a client base of Malta’s top criminals. He is also pretty thick.

The Minister for the Police and the Army (and Broadcasting) has admitted, after days of evading questions from the press and Opposition politicians, that he sat in on candidate interviews for the Security (Secret) Service.

This is absolutely shocking.

I won’t go into the details as to why, as I am now bored to tears of explaining the obvious to people whose democratic sensibilities were truncated at birth, and who were probably born without common sense anyway.

The Nationalist Party has issued a statement about the matter (only in Maltese, as usual – that has got to go because both languages are required in our current media environment) and the online media have reported on it in English – links below.

In any other European democracy, this would be an immediate-resignation matter. But not here. Oh no. Here, resignations are demanded about a bus service – but for dangerous abuse of power on this scale? Then no, of course not.

This is not the thin end of the wedge. We are halfway up the wedge already, and it’s only been a hundred days and one week.

53 Comments Comment

  1. edgar says:

    Wiccu u sorm* l-istess.

  2. Vera says:

    Of course it is a resignation matter when you consider the Service’s legally-defined role which is based totally on being arms-length from the politicians they could feasibly one day have to investigate.

    And yet again, as in the Cops Catering instance, you sense that they really do not see just why it is so wrong.

    Manuel Mallia obviously had an inkling because he did try to evade questions, however I am sure that was after the fact and on the day he saw no problem with toddling down to the interviews and sitting in.

  3. blue says:

    Well, we all knew what Labour was all about didn’t we. This is the unfortunate situation of living in a democratic country filled with morons.

  4. Edward says:

    Again, they won’t care. Even if they knew what it all meant, and some of them do, they won’t give a damn.

    They just want their party in power.

    They just want to hate the PN, because, bless them, they think that the PN is a conservative party and has been oppressing us all these 25 years with oppressive conservative laws and policies.

  5. Village says:

    Ex lavrant ta’ Demarco, baqa bahnan u ma jifhimx fil-politika u anke fil-ligi barra l-kriminal. Kompli ghaffeg, Manwel.

  6. maryanne says:

    Oh, so 36000 people can be wrong after all.

  7. sonia says:

    Bhalissa waqt Xarabank – kemm hu esagerat Joseph Muscat.

    Qaghdu kif qal li meta il-haddiema tal-Gvern bdew bin-nofs ta’ nhari wahda mit-tfal tieghu staqsietu, ”Allura issa f’nofsinhar tibda tkun id-dar?”

    Qed naraha ftit esagerazzjoni biex tifla ta’ dik l-eta’ tghid hekk. X’tahsbu?

    • Victor says:

      Well, if that’s the case it can only mean that the parents were discussing government affairs in the presence of the child.

      How would she have known that government departments work on half days in summer otherwise?

      This thing of trying to score points through the children is becoming sickening.

      • John Profumo says:

        Nothing wrong in discussing news and current affairs in front of children. It’s actually a good thing.

        What’s wrong is besotted parents (or pretend-besotted) inflicting amusing anecdotes about children and pets on people who don’t give a damn about either, but who are too polite to say so.

        Parents who talk about their children are self-obsessed and bore everyone else.

  8. davidg says:

    Tajba, din! A National Security Minister and Police Commissioner discussing and finding a way to offer cheap catering to international delegates.

    Imagine British MI5 Director General discussing with his Security Minister how to feed an international delegation at Buckingham Palace from their canteen, being served by British police officers.

    It is not just bizarre. It is hilarious.

  9. Denis says:

    The birth of the Gestapo. The state spies on those who do not agree with it.

    Re: the other article refering to “misbehaving” disabled children brings to mind the atrociuos and horrific conduct the Nazis inflicted on disabled persons.

    Are these politicians in their right state of mind?

  10. ciccio says:

    Ghaqal fit-Tmexxija.

  11. pazzo says:

    Illum bdejt nifhem kliem iz-ziju, Alla jahfirlu.

    Huwa kien jghidli meta tara wiehed jeghreq, ghidlu “Alla jbierek, kemm taf tghum!” Hekk gralha l-miskina Malta taghna….qed teghreq u kulhadd jghidilha ..Alla jbierek kemm taf tghum.

  12. ciccio says:

    I suspect that after losing Justice, he will now lose the Police, and National Security, and the Army and Broadcasting.

    • winwood says:

      That would create a splendid occasion for Herrera to celebrate with a cocktail party, most likely making use of Cops Caterers.

  13. Bubu says:

    It appears that the elves on haven’t really grasped the concept yet.

    I don’t know whether it was done on purpose or not by The Times, but the ridiculously short length limit they set on online comments is only encouraging the usual useless prattle, mostly by the usual airheads who have nothing interesting to say.

    Conversely it made it virtually impossible to develop an argument in any meaningful way.

    It has become quite impossible for me to read for more than a couple of minutes at a time without getting up to pace furiously round the room in frustration (in order to avoid doing unmentionable things to my laptop instead).

  14. David says:

    The Head of the security services asked to minister to be present for the last part of the interviews. The head of the security services chose the people selected and not the minister. Besides the appointments must be approved by the minister. There does not appear to be anything illegal, immoral or undemocratic in this.

    As far as I know in Malta the security service is part of the police force. Politicians are politically responsible for the police force. I prefer a security service under political and parliamentary scrutiny than one without any scrutiny which commits abuses as some security forces have recently been found to commit.

    [Daphne – David, please. You are BEYOND REDEMPTION. You would have made an excellent apparatchik in Soviet Russia. You have the mind, the thought processes, the consummate failure to grasp certain basic principles, and the mentality of one.]

    • La Redoute says:

      How does a minister sitting in on an interview constitute parliamentary scrutiny?

    • Tim Ripard says:

      David, do you understand the difference between political scrutiny and political control?

      Do you understand the difference between a minister of state covertly and illegally attending interviews and accountability to parliament? Are you in fact insane?

      Poor, poor Malta. The Nationalists were feeble but Labour is beyond the pits.

    • Victor says:

      Thank you Daphne, for telling David the things I wanted to tell him on reading his comment.

      Totally beyond redemption.

      • John Profumo says:

        People like David make Labour’s luck. Malta is a place where they grow on trees.

  15. trapezoid says:

    A friend of mine with years of experience in the Civil Service told me that he never heard of any minister sitting in at selection interviews of any sort, let alone for the Secret Service.

    Nor did heads of secretariats or any political appointees.

    Under Nationalist governments, the political was kept separate and distinct from the executive – this principle was widely understood.

    Having a minister sitting in on interviews breaks this fundamental principle.

    Being the Security Service makes it ten times worse.

    I wonder what the PM will say to defend what is clealry indefensible.

    • Ministerial representative says:

      I’ve also been told that some heads of schools were asked to sit on a number of interviewing boards as ministerial representatives.

      This is nowhere near the Security (Secret) Services scandal, but it definitely shows a common frame of mind within PL.

  16. caflisa says:

    I bet that this isn’t a breach of the government code of ethics, the one that has the thickness of a briksa, according to the gospel of Joseph.

    Neither is giving the police orders to carry out a job that has absolutely nothing to do with the oath they’ve taken … ah I forgot. To serve and protect. Doh!

    McJustice, except for the fact that justice was removed from Manuel’s menu.

  17. Joe Fenech says:

    Zero accountability. That’s Malta.

  18. Futur mill-aghar says:

    I can hardly keep up with all your posts this evening. Well, you always said you’d just have more to write about. I guess you weren’t kidding.

  19. Harry Purdie says:

    This ignorant, dangerous fat f*ck is a total f*ck up. He consorts with criminals, he has usurped the independence of the police force and now, he admits to overseeing secret-service personnel interviews.

    One hundred days ago we became ‘Planet of the Apes’, this week we became ‘Planet of the Bullfrogs’.

  20. Aunt Hetty says:

    One cannot chastize the judges for malingering and at the same time be seen to be reluctant give your full support to an upright judge who gives the sort of ruling that was given today about the illegalities at Armier.

    Mr Prime minister, you cannot sit on your fence forever,because you will end up like Humpty Dumpty – having a great fall and breaking into bits which no one will be able to put together again.

  21. just me says:

    On another matter..

    I heard Roberta Metsola say on radio that the study the blacklisted Chinese company is going to make regarding a bridge between Malta and Gozo is not actually free.

    She said that if one reads between the lines of the agreement, one realises that there are many hidden costs.

    Probably the Labour government is not even aware of this.

  22. Manuel says:

    Franco-hekk-hu-go-fik-Debono has gone into a lethargy period now.

    He demanded Carm Mifsud Bonnici’s resignation along with that of Austin Gatt for stupidities which he turned, together with The Times of Malta, into major serious incompetence from both ministers.

    Now it is the time for him to show if he truly has democracy at heart.

  23. maryanne says:

    Fat chance that Mallia resigns. It’s not his fault, it never is.

    The Head of Security Services asked him to be present. Just like the Commissioner of Police offered him catering services. .

    “The procedure which used to be followed under the previous administration was also followed in this instance which was that the minister had to approve the appointments in writing.

    Because of this, the head of the Service felt it would be wise for the minister to be present during the final interviews.”
    (The Times online).

    Note that these were he ‘final’ interviews.

    Also, can’t the minister differentiate between approving the appointments and being present for the interviews?

  24. Felix says:

    Of course, it is a resignation matter! We need to know now whether this was done with Joseph’s approval, after all.

    • John Profumo says:

      Of course it was, Felix. His wife was there, greeting the guests and “representing the prime minister”.

  25. CIS says:

    He will not resign. Dr Muscat must have been aware as Mrs Muscat was there. There’s going to be a new meaning to Diplomacy in the dictionary.

  26. Kevin Cassar says:

    The prime minister of the Czech Republic has just been forced from office after his chief of staff used the national security system to spy on three people including the PM s ex wife.

    The serious concerns which Dr Mallia’s interference raise cannot be ignored.

    One wonders how he plans to use the Secret Service, particularly knowing his direct conflict of interest having defended some of Malta’s worst criminals, many of who are still active in the criminal world.

  27. m f says:

    Qabda dilettanti, playing at politics.

    • John Profumo says:

      Dilettante voters make for the election of dilettante politicians, m f.

      We vote for those with whom we most closely identify.

  28. Dizastru says:

    Tghid l-Onor. Manuel Mallia staqsa ghall-degrees tal-universita bhal ma kien wieghed fl-intervista f’wahda mill gazzetti ewlenin?

    Li hu zgur li fl-ghazla tal kap tas-servizz ma kienitx issue.

    • maryanne says:

      “Dr Mallia said he would insist that recruits had a tertiary level of education. It was unacceptable that some people were unable to write a report. Ideally, members of the service should have a background of of international studies to enable them to analyse what was happening abroad. The service also needed people versed in legal affairs and in financial matters for investigation of money laundering.”…/manuel-mallia.46488...

      He must have changed his mind and a Form IIC report will probably be enough.

      U mela hafna karti tal-incova, as Mintoff used to say.

  29. Tabatha White says:

    This one act, as if there weren’t others in the same vein by Labour, is evidence of the very skewed logic the party in government labours under.

    All the switchers have put themselves in the same boat. They have tainted themselves with this same label of skewed logic. Free choice exercised with alarmingly bad judgement that speaks volumes about the true make-up of Maltese society.

    Pillars of society? Cultured and educated? Businessmen/ women with astounding acumen? Well now what’s changed is that we’re free to wonder what rules applied in their getting there, should it be of any interest.

  30. RP says:

    Ta’ min hi Malta? It was time for a change, they said. The idiots.

    • John Profumo says:

      Well, we certainly got one, didn’t we.

      Unfortunately, idiots vote for idiots.

      And because idiots breed idiots, the gene for brains is being bred out of the Maltese population.

  31. Viva lejber says:

    The security services investigate top criminals such as international drug dealers, the likes which top criminal lawyers like Manuel Mallia have as their top clients.

  32. Angus Black says:

    Yet another f*ck up by an overly f*cked up government with a f*cking leader.

  33. Dan Kif? says:

    It’s good to know what Manuel Mallia said about the Security Service couple of months ago. Is he still going in what he believed?


  34. Last Post says:

    Their logic is so indescribably thwarted (see David’s post and Daphne’s comment earlier on). The Minister argues that as he has to approve the selected candidates he might as well attend the final interviews of those same candidates.

    Of course this is a matter of resignation coming as it is from the Minister for Home Affairs and National Security.

    As the top criminal lawyer (aka the top lawyer favoured by criminals) it explains (more than anything else) such warped thinking and despicable behaviour.

    With so many gaffes perpetrated in such a short time in this most sensitive area for good governance, we are not-so-slowly and very surely moving towards a dangerous precipice such as that experienced under Mintoff and KMB – bar the violence.

    I’m starting to believe the speculation about the trampling of human rights and the eventual confrontation with the EU with all the consequences it entails.

    This is not meant to instill a sense of helplessness or fear but the Opposition should better concentrate on essentials and prepare itself (and not only in Parliament) for when this bad fruit ripens.

    After the 1976 election the PN was to some extent in the same situation as today. After a long period of gestation came the spark that in 1979 (Black Monday) kindled the people’s awareness to rally around the PN.

    Something tells me we might have to trace the same or similar route.

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