The Labour Party has moved to kick Rosianne Cutajar off a parliamentary committee she chairs.

Deputy Prime Minister and House leader Chris Fearne has given notice of a motion calling for Cutajar to be replaced on the social affairs committee by Labour MP Randolph Debattista.

Fearne is proposing that Katya De Giovanni, another Labour MP who already serves on the committee, replace Cutajar as its chairperson.

The motion to remove Cutajar from the parliamentary committee must be approved by parliament’s plenary to become effective.

The social affairs committee last met on March 13, when it discussed research reports about the impact of COVID-19 on the education system. It was due to meet again on March 22, but that sitting was not held, as by then Cutajar was in the eye of a political storm.

One day prior, author Mark Camilleri released transcripts of conversations Cutajar had with Yorgen Fenech in 2019 which revealed how close the MP was to the business magnate, who is now charged with complicity in murder.

The transcripts sparked a political controversy that culminated on Monday evening, when Cutajar resigned from the Labour Party’s parliamentary group, saying she did not want to be a burden to the party.

The Qormi MP said she would be staying on in parliament as an independent MP.

The decision capped a years-long descent down Labour’s pecking order that began when Times of Malta revealed how she had pocketed thousands of euro from Fenech as part of a property deal in Mdina.

At the time, Cutajar was a parliamentary secretary. She was made to resign from that post after parliament’s standards commissioner concluded that she should be investigated for tax evasion, as she had not declared that money in her income statements.

Cutajar was kept out of cabinet from that moment onwards, though she was nevertheless trusted to lead parliamentary committees.

In January 2022, she was appointed chair of parliament’s health committee. After the 2022 general election, held some months later, she was made chair of the social affairs committee.

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