Malta’s politicians need to put aside their differences and set up a timeframe for the implementation of constitutional reform, Chamber President Frank V. Farrugia said.
In a TimesTalk interview, Mr Farrugia said that the Chamber had immediately condemned the brutal murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia, and called upon the Government to examine the situation, find those responsible and bring them to justice.
“From this tragedy, we have to seize the opportunity. We need the constitution to change, as we’ve been discussing since this administration first came into power in 2013.”
“There needs to be unity in parliament – let the politicians set aside their differences, put their heads together and set up a timeframe for these changes to be implemented. We don’t want to wait 20 years for these changes to happen.
“Nobody should be above the rule of law. The guilty have to pay.”
Mr Farrugia also admitted that there was cause for concern about the results of recent surveys, from EY’s Malta Attractiveness Survey – which saw attractiveness to foreign investors dropping more than 10 points in a year, and its political stability and transparency as a factor in that attractiveness falling more than 30 points in just two years – to the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Index, which saw corruption rising sharply.
“We’re not insensitive to the situation. The institutions have to work. Corruption laws and whistleblower laws have to be used. The mechanism we have in place at the moment hasn’t worked – that’s why we need to put our heads together, and find the right formula.”
When grilled about business as a hotbed of corruption, Mr Farrugia said that whenever the Chamber of Commerce detected a violation of rules or ethics by one of its members, they would be brought in front of an in-house ethics committee and disciplined.