Joseph Muscat unleashed a series of social media messages discrediting the inquiry into the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia on Friday, as he began his testimony by telling them they had "failed miserably".

The former prime minister is the most high-profile witness to testify before the three-person board, who are tasked with looking into whether the state could have prevented Caruana Galizia’s murder in October 2017.

In his first comments to the board, he read the inquiry its own terms of reference and told them it had been reduced to “an exercise in curiosity” and had “deteriorated into a political exercise”.

“There might be those who argue that all what was asked was necessary in order to give a more complete picture of the political and social situation in our country,” he said in his opening statement that was also published on social media.

“This is a valid argument. But even if this was the case, the Inquiry still failed miserably, since it is the State which should have been investigated. Instead, it is the current Government only which was investigated. The Maltese State did not start in 2013, and many of the shortcomings known today are the result of decades of legacies by various Governments.” 

As he gave his testimony, Muscat’s Facebook page posted more than 20 updates with posts including comments that he had never instigated hatred and denying his involvement in secret offshore company Egrant. 

Caruana Galizia’s son Matthew reacted to Muscat’s social media blitz, describing it as a “full-on campaign by Joseph Muscat to discredit the public inquiry”.

He said: “He even hired someone to live-post his statements discrediting it.”

Another of her sons, Andrew, wrote that Muscat's testimony left him with an "overwhelming sense of relief  that this bitter, twisted man is no longer our prime minister." 

And one of Caruana Galizia's sisters, Corinne Vella, noted that while Muscat had spent three years as prime minister refusing to grant an interview to independent media, "Now he won't stop talking off his ring-binder of notes". 

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