Former minister Konrad Mizzi showed up briefly in Parliament on Tuesday, his first appearance since March, and just days after he was expelled from the Labour parliamentary group.
He turned up at 7pm, as Parliamentary Secretary Deo Debattista was moving the adjournment of the House and was in the almost-empty chamber for only a few minutes during which he had a short chat with Speaker Anġlu Farrugia.
Mizzi who appeared to have lost weight, went to the government side and entered his card to mark himself present before moving to have a chat with the Speaker. He did not take a seat.
The former minister was abroad for several weeks on what he had described as a business trip followed by a period of ill health.
He returned to Malta on a repatriation flight from the UK on June 9 and observed quarantine.
His long absence from parliament had been questioned by Opposition leader Adrian Delia who had called on the Speaker to take action against Mizzi, whom he described as “a fugitive”.
The Speaker had replied Mizzi was being excused on medical grounds and was still receiving his honoraria in full - around €22,000 per year - in line with the Standing Orders which allowed such exemption.
The former minister was expelled from the Labour parliamentary group during an extraordinary meeting of the parliamentary group and the executive committee of the PL in the wake of a Reuters/Times of Malta story which revealed on June 19 how secret company 17 Black, owned by Yorgen Fenech had raked in millions when Enemalta bought a wind farm in Montenegro while Mizzi was energy minister. Fenech is awaiting trial after having been accused of complicity in the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia.
The Panama Papers had revealed a link between 17 Black and a Panama company owned by Mizzi, although he has denied such links. He also denied any personal interest in the Montenegro deal.
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