“Accreditation? Oh, I’m sure Martin Scicluna will oblige.”

Published: August 23, 2015 at 12:28am

Joseph Muscat

A journalist from the Times of Malta asked the prime minister, on Friday at Cottonera, why he’s putting the cart before the horse and sorting out premises for Hani Hasan Naji Al Salah’s putative ‘university’ before it has accreditation from Malta’s accrediting body (which is led by Martin ‘Time For A Change To Labour’ Scicluna).

“So do you mean to say that if the project does not receive accreditation as a university, the whole thing will collapse?” the journalist asked the prime minister.

The prime minister can’t control that body language. When he is confronted by a question he has difficulty answering, he makes that text-book gesture of turning his back on his interlocutor even as he is answering him.

I’ve seen it so many times that I’ve struggled with the urge to ring his advisers and suggest they instruct him on how to stop doing it. “I don’t like you, your question annoyed me, and I’m turning my back on you to show that I want to break this off now. Where are my biscuits, mummy?”

The question was possibly the most pertinent one asked at that press conference and the prime minister’s answer was total rubbish. He said: “I will not interfere in the work of the (accreditation body) and I have full confidence in Martin Scicluna, who is an independent person.”

Oh, very independent. But let’s not go into that, because I don’t want to be accused of causing geriatrics to have an apoplexy.

It’s quite obvious that the accreditation body cannot/will not now turn down this business company’s application for the right to call itself a university, even though it’s an outfit which is going to teach just four subjects – business-related and computer games (yes, computer games) – and do no research.