More scandal in Malta as public funds probe opens

Magistrate Doreen Clarke is leading the inquiry.

The Magistrates Court in Malta has launched a criminal inquiry into the misuse of public funds by the governments’ cabinet members for their personal social media pages.

The investigation, in collaboration with the police Economic Crimes Unit, is looking into how ministers and junior ministers, known as parliamentary secretaries, were allegedly using public funds allocated to their office to fund their own personal political advertisements on social media.

The probe began following an investigation by the Commissioner for Standards George Hyzler who in May found that four of five ministers he picked randomly had used public funds to pay for promotional footage which they uploaded on their personal social media accounts.

The ministers were responsible for finance, the environment, transport and infrastructure.

Hyzler had asked the National Audit Office to carry out an in-depth investigation but the office referred the matter to the police which on its part launched a magisterial inquiry.

Magistrate Doreen Clarke is leading the inquiry.