Updated 7.10pm -
David Thake is calling for an internal investigation by the Nationalist Party to find out who tried to “broker a deal” with suspected Daphne Caruana Galizia murder mastermind Yorgen Fenech to ensure David Casa is not re-elected to the European Parliament.
The PN MP also urged the police to investigate “corrupt electoral practices”. (In the evening he announced that he had been summoned to police headquarters on Friday.)
On Wednesday, self-confessed middleman Melvin Theuma said in court that Fenech was irked by Casa's interest in his 17 Black Dubai account, and had offered the PN money to ensure the MEP was not re-elected.
Reacting, Casa said that the allegation was not new but that attempts to silence him had "clearly failed".
The PN denied the claims. The party said it never received any offer, let alone any payment, to undermine the campaign of any of its candidates.
Thake welcomed the denial but went “a step further”.
€50,000 bribe offer
The former radio host had already suggested, in June of 2019, – before it was made public that Fenech was the suspected mastermind – that the businessman had offered the PN €50,000 to ensure Casa was not re-elected.
He had made the claim during an episode of TV talk show Xarabank, but provided no evidence to back up his allegation. Instead, he pointed the finger at Adrian Delia’s “close advisors” Pierre Portelli and MP Kristy Debono, saying they were close to Mr Fenech.
In April of 2019, the Sunday Times of Malta reported that Debono and Hermann Schiavone had met Fenech to seek “possible sponsorship” related to a conference.
Debono and Schiavone deny involvement
Contacted on Thursday, Debono vehemently denied being approached by Fenech to broker a deal in order to ensure Casa was not re-elected. She insisted the pair had only met with Fenech for a "very, very short while".
"You can check the logs. This was a one-off meeting. It's not like we had a relationship with him [Fenech]," Debono said.
Meanwhile, Schiavone echoed the remarks saying Fenech did not discuss offering money to the PN during the April meeting.
"I totally support David Thake's call for investigation."
Thake said he expected the PN to launch an internal investigation "to ascertain who acted on its behalf, clearly without party authority, to try to broker this deal. Whoever this person or people were, have to shoulder political responsibility,” he said on Wednesday.
The police, he said, should also investigate “any criminal wrongdoing as brokerage would amount to corrupt electoral practices”.
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