“As Prime Minister of Malta, I feel duty bound to apologise to the family of the late Mrs Daphne Caruana Galizia and all those who feel aggrieved by this dark episode in our nation’s history. Lessons will be drawn from this episode, and we will continue with our ambitious reform program.”
Prime Minister Robert Abela was speaking at a press conference following the publication of the Daphne Caruana Galizia Inquiry report.
The Prime Minister said that the Government is committed to continue working to modernise Malta’s institutions, to strengthen the rule of law and enhance good governance.
“This episode does not define the people of this nation. It does not represent who we are, or our values,” said Dr Abela.
He added that the inquiry also recognises the Government’s efforts during the past eighteen months to strengthen the country’s institutions.
Similar statements to those echoed by international institutions like the Venice Commission, the European Commission and other international partners about the reforms Government has implemented. Reforms that changed the method of appointment of the President of the Republic, the Commissioner of the Malta Police Force, the Chief Justice, the judiciary and others that granted more powers and independence to various institutions.
This episode does not define the people of this nation. It does not represent who we are, or our values.
However, he said, the inquiry also says that the State must shoulder responsibility for serious short comings, especially related to governance and the protection of journalists.
The Prime Minister said that to build on these reforms, the Government will ensure that a process starts immediately on the principles of the recommendations made by the board of the public inquiry.
“We will also ensure that the IGM (Institute for Maltese Journalists), along with other relevant stakeholders to this process, will be invited to weigh in with their views on what they feel is necessary to strengthen the protection afforded to journalists and the media at large.”
“This, coupled with the ongoing processes by the relevant authorities and institutions, is the only way to deliver justice to the memory of Mrs Caruana Galizia,” he added.
Prime Minister Robert Abela said that it is his wish to meet the Caruana Galizia family and said that the worst thing that could be done at this stage is to engage in partisan debates rather than reflect on the lessons to be learned.