[WATCH] Updated | ‘Simon Busuttil is living in a parallel universe' - Prime Minister

Prime Minister said the former Opposition leader was either ‘taken for a very big ride’ or was part of a systematic attempt to destabilise the country

Prime Minsiter Joseph Muscat again called on former PN leader Simon Busuttil to give up his seat in parliament
Prime Minsiter Joseph Muscat again called on former PN leader Simon Busuttil to give up his seat in parliament

Prime Minister Joseph Muscat this morning said that former PN MP and former leader Simon Busuttil was living in a parallel universe or some sort of fantasy world if he really still believed the company Egrant belong to him.

A magisterial inquiry into whether the Panamanian company belong to Muscat or any of his family members found no connection to the Prime Minister, however in parliament on Tuesday, Busuttil insisted that he still believed the company was Muscat’s.

Busuttil’s comment was made at the end of a heated spat between the two, during which Muscat referred to Busuttil as a fraudster. He later said explained himself, saying that the inquiry had found that documents allegedly linking the Muscat’s to the company had been falsified. The fact that Busuttil had made the allegations his own, made him complicit in a fraudulent act.

“The fact that up until yesterday, he was still saying that despite everything, the company belongs to me or my wife, shows he is living in some parallel universe,” Muscat told journalists following a visit to the Malta College for Arts, Science and Technology on Wednesday.    

"I watch certain television series on parallel universes with my children, but Busuttil beats all of them with his fantasies."

Muscat insisted that Busuttil needed to take responsibility for his claims, adding that the fact that he was still insisting the company belonged to Muscat put into perspective Busuttil’s demands for invesitgations.

“When it is an investigation he likes he threats it as though it were unquestionable, but when it doesn’t he is quick to cast doubt on the investigation,” Muscat said.   

The Prime Minister insisted that on the Egrant affair, Busuttil was either “taken for a very big ride, or was part of a system which falsified signatures, and which tried to destablise the country and which ultimately led to a general election”.

The Prime Minister went on to say he believed Busuttil had no option but to give up his parliamentary seat.

Muscat also apologised for the "tone" he used in parliament yesterday evening. "That wasn't my usual style, but the Egrant matter is something which hurt me. Busuttil attitude leaves much to be desired," he said.

Discussion on MPs' role needed

Asked about Economy minister Chris Cardona’s alleged links to criminals, Muscat said that he wouldn't speculate on links between lawyers and their clients. Despite the fact that Cardona, as a minister, is a full-time politicians, Muscat said that this issue which had to be discussed was what role MPs should have.

"The much wider discussion we should have in the next months is about the role of MPs and if they should remain part-timers or else relinquish their profession and become full time MPs," Muscat said.

Busuttil should reflect on what the truth really is 

In comments to MaltaToday, Michelle Muscat, in whose name the company Egrant was claimed to have been registered, said she had nothing more to add to what she had said on the matter in the past. 

Busuttil, she said, needed to take time and reflect on what the truth really is. "He is not impressing anyone by continuing to lie."

Declarations by ‘politically irrelevant’ Busuttil are surreal – Labour

Addressing a press conference at the Labour Party headquarters in Hamrun, MP Edward Zammit Lewis said Busuttil was politically irrelevant and that his “surreal” declarations in which he said he was proud of what he had done.

He said Busuttil was being sensational in order to become more politically relevant, taking up valuable parliamentary time in the process.  

Busuttil, he said, had showed a complete disregard for the rule of law in Malta when he said he still believed Egrant to belong to the Prime Minister.

Government whip Byron Camilleri said that Busuttil had not had the decency to suspend himself from parliament, even after current leader Adrian Delia asked him to do so following the publication of the inquiry’s conclusions.

Zammit Lewis asked whether it was the case that Delia now agreed with Busuttil; whether he still believed that Busuttil was diminishing the PN’s credibility; whether Delia still believed that Busuttil ought to take responsibility for what he claimed and is still claiming; as well as whether he too believes Egrant belongs to the Prime Minister.

More in National

Get access to the real stories first with the digital edition

Subscribe