On Wednesday, local news website Malta Today alleged that Times of Malta journalist Ivan Camilleri had been confronted at a supermarket over an alleged case of shoplifting.
Having spoken to the journalist in question as well as to two of the supermarket’s directors separately, we believe the incident in question was misconstrued by Malta Today's managing editor Saviour Balzan. We have been assured by both directors that this was nothing more than an innocent oversight at the cashier’s desk.
We stand by our journalist and will defend him and all other colleagues from personal attacks.
The two articles Mr Balzan wrote are littered with malicious innuendo and appear to have been written with the intention of misleading readers into believing that Mr Camilleri committed a crime.
We will not speculate as to why Mr Balzan chose to attack one of our journalists with such fervour, though we will note that it is not the first time that he has tried – and failed – to smear an individual using personal attacks.
It is disappointing to see the managing editor of a media house use his position to indulge in such behaviour, as it also discredits the good work many Malta Today reporters do every day.
One hopes that Mr Balzan will in future channel his energy to where it really counts, and speak truth to power.
Meanwhile, Mr Camilleri is seeking legal advice to counteract the claims.
Michel Rizzo – Managing Director
Herman Grech – Editor-in-chief
Bertrand Borg – Online editor
Mark Wood – Print editor